Patients 50 and older diagnosedwith diabetes between 1950 and 1995face a greater risk of cancer of the pancreas.The study, which included 2122patients from Rochester, Minn, lookedat diagnosis of pancreatic cancer duringthe 45-year period. Of the patients,18 were diagnosed with the cancerwithin 3 years.
The researchers compared this ratewith the frequency of pancreatic cancerexpected for individuals of similar ageand sex without diabetes. The grouprecently diagnosed with diabetes had 8times the expected rate. "Our goal nowis to identify a marker in the blood thatwill enable us to distinguish diabetesassociated with pancreatic cancer fromthe far more common type 2 diabetes," said lead investigator Suresh Chari,MD. (The findings were reported inGastroenterology, August 2005.)