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More evidence suggests alcohol and tobacco affect age of pancreatic cancer onset

Category: Cancer Detection and Tumor Markers

More evidence suggests alcohol and tobacco affect age of pancreatic cancer onset

Boston University Medical Center has released findings that show that habitual consumers of alcohol and cigarettes are increasing their risk of blood testing detecting tumor markers for pancreatic cancer at a younger age.

The researchers note that, while the direct cause of the pancreatic cancer known as adenocarcinoma is unknown, smoking, drinking more alcohol than doctors recommend, consuming too much soda and eating a diet high in fat have been shown to increase the risk. The deadly disease has also been linked to obesity, chronic pancreatitis and diabetes.

This research echoes the results of studies published in the American Journal of Gastroenterology in September, which showed that smoking and drinking decreases the average age of individuals who receive affirmative blood testing for pancreatic cancer from 72 to 60 years old.

According to the National Cancer Institute, more than 40,000 new cases of pancreatic cancer are reported each year in the U.S., with almost 38,000 deaths caused by the disease annually. The organization also notes that about 20 percent of pancreatic cancer patients are between 55 and 64 years old, more than 25 percent are over 65, while almost 30 percent are between 75 and 84 years old.

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