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AACR: Weight Gain Tied to Prostate Cancer Recurrence

Also, obesity, smoking associated with increased risk of dying from the cancer once diagnosed

TUESDAY, April 20 (HealthDay News) -- Obesity and weight gain are associated with an increased risk of prostate cancer recurrence after prostatectomy, and obesity and smoking are associated with an increased risk of dying from the cancer once a patient is diagnosed, according to two studies presented at the annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research, held from April 17 to 21 in Washington, D.C.

In a retrospective cohort study, Corrine E. Joshu, Ph.D., of Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore, and colleagues evaluated 1,337 men with clinically-localized prostate cancer who had undergone prostatectomy between 1993 and 2006. The researchers found that weight gain and obesity contributed to the risk of prostate cancer recurrence after prostatectomy, especially in sedentary or inactive men. Compared to men whose body mass index (BMI) remained unchanged, men whose BMI increased by at least 1 kg/m2 from five years prior to prostate removal to one year post-surgery had double the recurrence risk.

In another study, Jing Ma, M.D., of Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, and colleagues evaluated pre-diagnostic smoking and BMI information on 2,715 men diagnosed with prostate cancer between 1982 and 2009 who took part in the Physician's Health Study. During the 27 years of follow-up, 882 men died, with 11 percent of the deaths attributed to prostate cancer. The researchers determined that the risk of mortality increased by 52 percent for each five-point increase in BMI, with current smokers having a 55 percent increase in mortality from prostate cancer compared to those who never smoked. Elevated C-peptide levels were also associated with higher risk of mortality.

"Only a fraction of prostate cancer patients die of the disease. The majority of the patients with localized and low Gleason grade disease die of other causes such as cardiovascular diseases. We, therefore, need to take overweight/obesity and smoking history into account when evaluating clinical prognosis once they are diagnosed," Ma said in a statement.

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