Obesity Raises Risk for Secondary Primary Cancers in Men

HealthDay News — Obesity before a cancer diagnosis is associated with an increased risk for overall and individual secondary primary cancers in males, according to a study published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Sang Min Park, MD, PhD, from the Seoul National University College of Medicine in South Korea, and colleagues assessed the effects of obesity before the diagnosis of a first cancer on the development of secondary primary cancers in 239,615 Korean male cancer survivors (January 2003 through December 2010).

The researchers found that over 1,614,583 person-years of follow-up, 4799 patients had secondary primary cancers. Among cancer survivors, the age-standardized incidence rate of cancer was 1.1 times higher than that of the general population. Prediagnosis BMI and risk of all-combined, colorectal, liver, lymphoma, biliary tract, kidney, and obesity-related secondary primary cancers had positive linear trends. The adjusted hazard ratios for secondary primary cancers among severely obese (BMI ≥ 30 kg/m²) cancer survivors were significantly higher than those for first cancers among all cohort participants (1.41 vs 1.12).

“Prediagnosis obesity is a risk factor for overall and individual secondary primary cancers, and the strength of the BMI-cancer association is slightly stronger in male cancer survivors than in the general population,” the researchers wrote.

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  1. Park SM, Hun YH, et al. Prediagnosis body mass index and risk of secondary primary cancer in male cancer survivors: a large cohort study. J Clin Oncol. 2016 Oct 10. doi:10.1200/JCO.2016.66.4920 [Epub ahead of print].