(HealthDay News) — Among patients with type 2 diabetes, rates of cancer death have decreased over time for younger patients but increased for older patients, according to a study published in Diabetologia.

The study also showed a higher risk of cancer death among patients with colorectal, pancreatic, liver, or endometrial cancer.

Researchers examined trends in all-cause mortality, all-cancer mortality, and cancer-specific mortality in a cohort of patients aged 35 years and older who had newly diagnosed type 2 diabetes. The cohort included 137,804 patients, and the median follow-up was 8.4 years.

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From 1998 to 2018, there was a decrease in all-cause mortality rates across the age groups. Cancer mortality rates decreased for 55-year-olds and 65-year-olds but increased for 75-year-olds and 85-year-olds. The average annual percentage changes (AAPCs) were −1.4%, −0.2%, 1.2%, and 1.6%, respectively.

Overall, AAPCs were higher in women than in men (1.5% vs 0.5%), in the least deprived vs most deprived group (1.5% vs 1.0%), and in patients with morbid obesity vs normal body weight (5.8% vs 0.7%).

During the whole study period, people with type 2 diabetes had an increased risk of death from colorectal cancer (standardized mortality ratio [SMR], 2.40; 95% CI, 2.26-2.54), pancreatic cancer (SMR, 2.12; 95% CI, 1.99-2.25), liver cancer (SMR, 2.13; 95% CI, 1.94-2.33), and endometrial cancer (SMR, 2.08; 95% CI, 1.76-2.44), compared with the general population.

“Our findings underline the growing cancer burden in people with type 2 diabetes, particularly in older individuals, and highlight the need to prioritize cancer prevention, research, and early detection and management in this population, especially for colorectal, pancreatic, liver, and endometrial cancer,” the study authors wrote.

Several authors disclosed ties to the pharmaceutical and medical device industry.

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