Among people living with hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection, diabetes increases the risk of developing liver cancer and other malignancies by roughly 70 percent, according to a new report published online ahead of print by the journal Hepatology. Reviewing the medical records of more than 4,300 Japanese people living with HCV followed for an average of eight years—606 of whom developed at least one form of cancer—the researchers reported that cirrhosis, not being cured of hep C as a result of treatment and type II diabetes were the three factors associated with being diagnosed with liver cancer. Patients diagnosed with diabetes who kept there HbA1c levels—three-month average blood sugar levels—below 7 percent were less likely to develop liver cancer. As for non-liver-related cancers, advancing age, heavier smoking and type II diabetes were the most important factors, with pancreatic cancer being one malignancy that was clearly more likely to occur in patients with HCV and diabetes.

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