Coexisting diabetes mellitus (DM) is associated with increased risk for hospitalization, multiple hospitalizations, and longer length of hospital stay for patients with solid-organ malignancies, a study published in Future Science OA has shown.1

Risk of onset of and mortality due to solid-organ malignancy (eg, breast, colorectal, lung, pancreas) is increased in patients with diabetes mellitus, and hyperglycemia is associated with mortality; however, data on the interactions between hospitalizations and diabetes and solid-organ malignancy are lacking.

In this study, researchers identified 4620 patients with solid-organ malignancy, of which 732 also had diabetes, from the institutional cancer registry of the Mayo Clinic, Arizona, to determine the effect of coexisting diabetes on hospitalizations in patients with cancer.

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Study results revealed that cancer patients with diabetes had a 72% greater chance of requiring any hospitalization (odds ratio [OR], 1.72; 95% CI, 1.46-2.04; P <.01). Chances of multiple admissions were 84% greater in this patient population (OR, 1.84; 95% CI, 1.53-2.21; P <.01). In addition, hospital lengths of stay were 0.57 days longer (P <.01).

“This is the first analysis to determine that DM coexisting with solid-organ malignancies is associated with risk of hospitalization and multiple hospitalizations,” commented Nina Karlin, MD, Division of Hematology and Medical Oncology, Mayo Clinic, Scottsdale, Arizona, and corresponding author. “Such findings are thought-provoking and have significant economic implications. Further study is needed so that mitigating strategies can be developed.”

Limitations of the study include that the data are from one institution; therefore, the results cannot be generalized to other facilities, the researchers reported. In addition, because the cancer registry was the primary data source, some patient-level variables such as diabetes-related complications and duration of diabetes, which can be important factors in hospitalization risk, were not included.

The researchers suggest determining diabetes-related factors that contribute to hospitalizations is an ideal next step. Appropriate preventive measures can be implemented for these patients with greater knowledge of the interaction between diabetes and solid-organ malignancies.


1. Karlin NJ, Kosiorek HE, Castro JC, Cook CB. Risk of hospitalization in patients with diabetes mellitus who have solid-organ malignancy. Future Sci OA. 2016 Jul 15. doi: 10.4155/fsoa-2016-0020.