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Pancreatic Cancer may be linked to Diabetes

According to researchers, a new study strongly propose that diabetes newly diagnosed in people above 50 years, may be a sign of underlying early-stage pancreatic cancer.// Older patients whose diabetes began late in life were 10 times more likely to be diagnosed with pancreatic cancer within three years following onset of diabetes.In the study, the link appeared especially pronounced for people in their 70s when diabetes first appeared.

Dr. Suresh T. Chari, of the Mayo Clinic in Rochester,in his theory, told that if one can pinpoint this form of diabetes, then you could pick a patient you identify for pancreatic cancer early before they have symptoms. This becomes an indicator for further diagnosis.

Chari and others were careful to note that the research does not suggest diabetes causes the cancer, but instead said it presents further evidence that the pancreatic cancer is likely already established and the cancer may actually cause the diabetes. He told that he had already begun using the term "pancreatic cancer-induced diabetes" to emphasize the point.

However, not all late-onset cases of diabetes are associated with pancreatic cancer. The great majority, perhaps 90 percent, are the relatively common type 2 form with no association to cancer. The diabetes that is linked to cancer occurs in about one out of a hundred cases of late-onset diabetes. The cases used for the study came from the Rochester Epidemiology Program, funded by the National Institutes of Health. Researchers identified patients with late-onset diabetes in Rochester, between 1970 and 1996 and followed them for three years to see who developed pancreatic cancer.

Investigators found 1,050 new diabetes cases in people age 40 and older. Of those, 21 developed pancreatic cancer within three years. Based on normal national data, Chari said, one would expect to find just two cases instead of 21. He said the diabetes-pancreatic cancer link was even more pronounce
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