Type 2 diabetes linked with an increased risk of dying from cancer

Research suggests that the risk of dying from any type of cancer is 18 per cent higher among people with type 2 diabetes, compared with the general population


24 January 2023

Type 2 diabetes, which requires people to regularly check their blood sugar levels, has been linked to an increased risk of cancer

Type 2 diabetes, which requires people to regularly check their blood sugar levels, has been linked with an increased risk of cancer

filadendron/E+/Getty Images

People with type 2 diabetes are more likely to die from any type of cancer than the general population, a study has suggested. While the reasons for this are unclear, it could be related to the prolonged raised blood sugar levels and inflammatory effects seen in type 2 diabetes.

Type 2 diabetes has previously been linked with an increased risk of developing cancer. However, the severity of the risk and how it affects mortality were unknown.

To learn more, Suping Ling at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and her colleagues looked at a database of more than 137,800 people in the UK, aged 35 or over, with type 2 diabetes.

The researchers tracked whether any of the participants were diagnosed with cancer, and the outcomes of their condition, from 1998 to 2018.

At the end of the study period, these outcomes were compared against people in the general UK population with the same type of cancer and other similar characteristics, such as age and weight. Figures for the general population were taken from the Office for National Statistics and included people with and without type 2 diabetes.

Type 2 diabetes aside, cancer causes around 1 in 4 deaths in the UK. Nevertheless, the results show that the participants with type 2 diabetes were 18 per cent more likely to die from any type of cancer compared with the general population.

Their risk of dying from colorectal cancer specifically or that affecting the liver, pancreas or endometrium, the tissue that lines the uterus, was around twice as high.

“People with type 2 diabetes are living longer and as a result their bodies are exposed to insulin resistance for longer, which increases their risk of cancer,” says Ling.

The results also show that breast cancer mortality was 9 per cent higher among the participants with type 2 diabetes. This increased by 4.1 per cent per year among the younger participants, defined as those aged 55 at the start of the study.

According to Ling, further research should assess whether people younger than 55 with type 2 diabetes are also at increased risk of breast cancer mortality and may benefit from earlier mammograms, which the national health services in the UK offer to women aged 50 to 70.

Mammograms in younger women aren’t always useful, however, as they tend to have denser breast tissue, which can lead to a misdiagnosis and unnecessary treatment, says Ling.

The study didn’t include people with type 1 diabetes. Other research suggests that they also have an increased risk of certain types of cancer.

According to Jonathan Stegall at The Center for Advanced Medicine, Georgia, the latest study should help doctors monitor people with type 2 diabetes for a potentially heightened risk of advanced cancer.

More on these topics:

Source link (Headline) Type 2 Diabetes Linked With Increased Risk of Dying From Cancer

Recent findings have shown that having type 2 diabetes increases a person’s risk of dying from cancer by 16 percent.

A study published in The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology drew data from 105 million adults in three countries — the United States, England, and Wales — and tracked participants’ health over a 10-year period.

The results, which were developed in collaboration with universities in all three countries and medical facilities in Wales, found that adults with type 2 diabetes had a 16 percent higher risk of dying of cancer than people who were not diabetic.

The study also found that type 2 diabetes is associated with a higher risk of cancer-related mortality in people of all ages and in men and women.

While the link between type 2 diabetes and cancer has been well-established, Franck Mauvais-Jarvis, a professor of medicine at the Tulane University School of Medicine, said these results emphasize the importance of early diagnosis and aggressive management of type 2 diabetes. “It’s now more important than ever to get people with Type 2 diabetes into intensive treatment,” he said in a statement.

The study authors believe that better management of type 2 diabetes can help reduce the risk of cancer-related mortality. They recommend that people with diabetes get more frequent health screenings, practice a healthy lifestyle, and work with their healthcare professionals to optimize their glycemic control.

Overall, the results of this study are a reminder of the importance of diabetes management, especially since latent diabetes has been linked with a higher risk of cancer-related mortality.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button