According to new research, stroke survivors are almost twice at the risk of developing Cancer, particularly Bowel, Lung and Prostate Cancer. A stroke refers to a serious life-threatening condition which occurs when the blood is unable to reach to the brain properly and remains cut off. Research undertaken by the scientists reveals that several people were diagnosed with cancer shortly after they were able to overcome a stroke. It implies that significant percentage of stroke survivors are more likely to have underlying cancer with rate of cancer almost twice that of the general population.
The findings to be shared with the European Society for Medical Oncology, reflected that the most frequent type of cancer includes Bowel, Lung and Prostate. As per Dr. Jacobo Rogado, lead study author, post mortem studies suggest that cancer can develop after a stroke but the magnitude of this association still remains undescribed. A study was conducted to establish whether any such association exists and to identify factors which may help in predicting the risk. Findings of the study revealed that within 18 months of diagnosis of stroke, 7.6 percent of the people surviving the stroke were diagnosed with cancer. This was much more higher than the expected 4.5 percent in the general population.
Around 45 percent of the cancer cases were diagnosed within six months after a patient suffered stroke. The diagnosis of cancer usually happened at an advanced stage and diagnosis was made within six months after a stroke. This shows that cancer was already present when the stroke occurred but there was no visible symptoms. Moreover, around two-thirds of the patients who developed cancer were found with with metastatic – where cancer spreads to new areas of the body – or locally advanced disease.
Rogado suggests that right after the diagnosis of stroke, stroke survivors should be followed clinically for development of cancer within 18 months. This applies specially to those patients who are old with previous history of cancer or to those who have high fibrinogen or low levels of haemoglobin. In order to confirm any association between stroke and cancer, further research is needed.
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