What is the effect of diabetes on breast cancer risk?

Updated: Dec 16, 2019
  • Author: Jessica Katz, MD, PhD, FACP; Chief Editor: Marie Catherine Lee, MD, FACS  more...
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Answer

Answer

Postmenopausal women with type 2 diabetes have a 17% higher risk of developing breast cancer. In addition, diabetic women with a new breast cancer have a higher incidence of being diagnosed at a more advanced stage. Diabetics are diagnosed with stage I cancer at about 49% of the frequency as non-diabetics; they are 21% and 16% more likely to be diagnosed with stage III or stage IV disease, respectively. This elevated risk was noted specifically in postmenopausal women with estrogen receptor-positive disease. [31]


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