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Higher risk of colorectal cancer in patients with newly diagnosed diabetes mellitus before the age of colorectal cancer screening initiation

De Kort S, et al., Sci Rep 2017;7:in press

Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) is associated with greater risk for colorectal cancer (CRC). The age of onset of T2DM is decreasing worldwide. An increased CRC risk in young T2DM patients could be relevant for the age at which to initiate CRC screening. We report on CRC risk in T2DM patients with attention to age of diagnosis. We used pharmacy data (from 1998 to 2010) from the PHARMO Database Network linked to the Eindhoven Cancer Registry. Multivariable time-dependent Cox regression analyses were conducted to calculate hazard ratios (HR) for developing CRC comparing T2DM with non-T2DM. During 2,599,925 years of follow-up, 394 CRC cases among 41,716 diabetes patients (mean age 64.0 yr, 48% men) and 1,939 CRC cases among 325,054 non-diabetic patients (mean age 51.2 yr, 46% men) were identified. Diabetes was associated with an increased CRC risk in both men and women (HR 1.3, 95% CI 1.2–1.5), particularly in the first 6 months after T2DM diagnosis and pronounced in the proximal colon. This risk was even higher in men younger than 55 years (HR 2.0, 95% CI 1.0–3.8). T2DM was associated with a time-varying and subsite-specific increased CRC risk, which was even higher in men aged <55 years.

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