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Cancer Deaths More Common Among Older Adults With Type 2 Diabetes

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According to a UK study, type 2 diabetic older persons have a higher cancer mortality rate recently.

From 1998 to 2018, the all-cause death rates in a cohort of more than 137,000 adults with type 2 diabetes fell in all age groups. In contrast, people with type 2 diabetes experienced an increase in cancer-related mortality rates between the ages of 75 and 85.

White individuals and smokers appeared to be experiencing an upward trend in cancer death rates (0.6% and 3.4%, respectively), while nonsmokers and other ethnic groups appeared to be experiencing a downward trend (-1.4% and -3.4%).

Over the course of the median follow-up of 8.4 years, the average annual percentage change (AAPC) in the cancer mortality rate was 1.2% for those with diabetes aged 75 and older and 1.6% for those aged 85 and older. On the other hand, among persons aged 55 and older, the annual rate of cancer mortality reduced by 1.4% and 0.2%, respectively.

Cancer Deaths More Common Among Older Adults With Type 2 Diabetes

Compared to a 0.5% increase in men, the cancer death rate for women increased by 1.5% AAPC. According to the authors, the disparity between the sexes started to reduce about 2012-2014 and has since increased. Males had higher cancer mortality rates and a higher percentage of cancer fatalities over the most of the 1998–2018 period.

Observes a team of researchers, lead by Dr. Suping Ling of the University of Leicester in England, “People with morbid obesity (BMI 35 or more) suffered one of the greatest annual increases of 5.8%, according to their analysis of who was most affected by the rising cancer death rate.” However, the average increase was only 0.7% for type 2 diabetes with normal body weights (BMI 18.5-24.9).

There are many patterns in the death from cancer in this cohort of people with diabetes. For a number of cancer types between 1998 and 2018, people with type 2 diabetes had significantly higher standardised mortality ratios (SMRs) than the general population.

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