"Diabetes and adenomas are two very common conditions. But we need more data before we can say one causes the other," says March Seabrook, MD, a gastroenterologist in Columbia, S.C. He was not involved with the research.
The analysis took into account some, but not all, diabetes risk factors that could affect the results, Seabrook tells WebMD.
The Role of Insulin
Okeke tells WebMD that insulin and other hormones might explain the link between diabetes and precancerous colon growths.
People with diabetes often have high levels of the blood-sugar-regulating hormone insulin, for example. High levels of insulin may promote the growth of cells, including precancerous and cancer cells, he says.
Still, "more study is needed," Okeke says.
For now, people with diabetes should continue to follow general recommendations for colon cancer screening, Seabrook says.
The guidelines call for screening to begin at age 50 if there are no risk factors, he says. Diabetes is not currently a risk factor.
If the findings are validated and diabetes does turn out to cause precancerous colon growths or colon cancer, "we may have to screen people with diabetes at a younger age, and at shorter intervals, than people without diabetes," Seabrook tells WebMD.
A total of 25.8 million Americans have diabetes, according to the American Diabetes Association. Over 1.1 million have colorectal cancer, according to the American Cancer Society.
The new study was presented at a medical conference. They should be considered preliminary as they have not yet undergone the "peer review" process, in which outside experts scrutinize the data prior to publication in a medical journal.
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If the level is below 70 or you are experiencing symptoms such as shaking, sweating or difficulty thinking, you will need to raise the number immediately. A quick solution is to eat a few pieces of hard candy or 1 tablespoon of sugar or honey. Recheck your numbers again in 15 minutes to see if the number has gone up. If not, repeat the steps above or call your doctor.
People who experience hypoglycemia several times in a week should call their health care provider. It's important to monitor your levels each day so you can make sure your numbers are within the range. If you are pregnant always consult with your health care provider.
Congratulations on taking steps to manage your health.
However, it's important to continue to track your numbers so that you can make lifestyle changes if needed. If you are pregnant always consult with your physician.
Your level is high if this reading was taken before eating. Aim for 70-130 before meals and less than 180 two hours after meals.
Even if your number is high, it's not too late for you to take control of your health and lower your blood sugar.
One of the first steps is to monitor your levels each day. If you are pregnant always consult with your physician.
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