Link Between Diabetes and Blood Cancer

11:10 AM, Nov 5, 2012   |    comments
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While the link between diabetes and cancer is still being researched...

A team of doctors say preventing diabetes could *reduce* the risk for certain cancers by a significant percentage.

NBC's Barbara Morse Silva has more.

Dr. Jorge Castillo, Radiation Oncologist: "If we could prevent diabetes maybe we could prevent the onset of of these other cancers."

Dr. Jorge Castillo is a doctor who specializes in treating blood cancers.

Dr. Jorge Castillo, Radiation Oncologist: "The link between cancer is an evolving matter."

Previous studies, he says, have linked diabetes to an increased risk in colon, stomach and pancreatic cancers.

but Dr. Castillo was interested in the link between diabetes and blood cancers so he and colleagues analyzed 26 previously published research articles.

Dr. Jorge Castillo, Radiation Oncologist: "Our study was based on 17 thousand cases which is a large study basically shows that patients with diabetes and we focused specifically on diabetes, type two which is the most common type of diabetes, probably 90-95 percent of all diabetes are type two and we saw that by having that diagnosis of diabetes that the risk of having blood cancers increased by approximately 20-25 percent."

Interestingly Dr. Castillo found that included all blood cancers except for hodgkin lymphoma.

Dr. Castillo's findings are published on line in the american hematology journal, blood.

and while more research is needed, he concludes, by taking steps to prevent type two diabetes, that could translate into 7-thousand fewer blood cancer cases.

In All, Dr. Castillo says, about 100 and 50-thousand people are diagnosed with leukemia each year.

and... he says thanks to new targeted therapies... more patients are living longer or being cured.

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