In a large study, covering 1.9 million patients with breast or colon cancer, researchers sorted through the data to find those patients who were also diabetic. The findings are troubling. Diabetic patients, in the study, have a 26% increased risk of colon cancer development and a 30% increase risk of dying from the disease compared to non-diabetic patients.
In reality, research is just affirming what we already know. We know that a patient's risk for colon cancer rises when they are overweight/obese. We also know that a sedentary lifestyle is a risk factor for colon cancer, regardless of weight. Both of these are also risk factors for developing type II diabetes. Type II Diabetes is the most common in the US, it is a chronic disease that can be genetic; but, is most typically diagnosed in overweight adults.
The wear on the body, over time, from the obesity and from the diabetes, makes surgical recovery more difficult. And, in general, makes it more likely that a patient will not tolerate the cancer treatments well.
What does all of this mean for you, the patient? If you have already been diagnosed with diabetes, then carefully follow your doctors orders and make an appointment with a specially trained GI physician for a consult. You may need to be screened, prior to the age of 50, because of the increased risk.
The Doctors of GI Associates are ready to help. You do not need a referral to be seen. We are conveniently located in Jackson, Madison and Vicksburg. If you already are a patient, please use the patient portal. If you are new to GI Associates, you may fill in the form here to request an appointment. Of course, during office hours we can be reached at 601-355-1234.