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Reuters Health Information (2007-10-02): Diabetes tied to recurrence of HCV-related hepatocellular cancer


Diabetes tied to recurrence of HCV-related hepatocellular cancer

Last Updated: 2007-10-02 11:56:50 -0400 (Reuters Health)

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Diabetes is a predictor of poor outcome in patients who have hepatocellular carcinoma related to hepatitis C virus infection (HCV), Japanese investigators report in the September issue of the American Journal of Gastroenterology.

As senior investigator Dr. Shuichi Kaneko told Reuters Health, "Diabetes is a risk factor not only for development of hepatocellular carcinoma, but also for recurrence after operation."

Dr. Kaneko and colleagues at Kanazawa University retrospectively studied 90 patients with hepatitis B and/or C who had undergone surgical treatment for hepatocellular carcinoma. Of this group, 30 had diabetes and the remaining 60 were diabetes-free.

In all, 49 patients had recurrence after surgery. Of these, 22 were from the diabetic group (73.3%) and 27 (45.0%) were from the non-diabetic group. Mean time to recurrence was 32.8 months.

The researchers found that there was no significant difference in survival between diabetic patients and non-diabetic patients with hepatitis B-related hepatocellular carcinoma.

However, comparison of diabetic and non-diabetic patients with HCV-related disease showed that survival rates at 3 years and beyond were significantly lower in the diabetic group than among the non-diabetics. Survival rates at 5 years, for example, were 43.8% versus 82.6%, respectively.

Given these findings, concluded Dr. Kaneko, diabetic patients "should be closely followed for this carcinoma."

Am J Gastroenterol 2007;102:1939-1946.

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