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15-01-2018 | Colorectal cancer | Article

Diabetes, Obesity, and the Metabolic Syndrome as Prognostic Factors in Stages I to III Colorectal Cancer Patients

Journal of Gastrointestinal Cancer

Authors: Brianna Croft, Melissa Reed, Caitlyn Patrick, Natalie Kovacevich, Ioannis A. Voutsadakis

Publisher: Springer US



Attempts to introduce prognostic factors for survival outcomes in localized colorectal cancer patients receiving surgical treatment with or without adjuvant therapies, beyond the classic staging parameters, have been met with limited success. Obesity and diabetes mellitus are among the conditions that predispose to colorectal cancer but their value as prognostic markers once the disease is diagnosed is controversial.

Patients and Methods

This study examines the prognostic value of the components of metabolic syndrome in a retrospective series of colorectal cancer patients with stages I to III disease followed in a single center.


Among the four components of the metabolic syndrome, only diabetes was independently associated with progression-free survival (PFS) while obesity, hypertension, and dyslipidemia were not. No associations of the metabolic syndrome (MS) or its components with overall survival (OS) were observed in multivariate analysis.


These data pinpoint to diabetes mellitus (DM) as a possible prognostic factor for PFS in localized colorectal cancer and further cast doubt for the value of obesity as measured by body mass index (BMI) on local stage colorectal cancer prognosis.

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