Cancer risk in stroke survivors followed for up to 10 years in general practices in Germany
The goal of this study was to analyze cancer risk in stroke survivors followed for up to 10 years in general practices in Germany.
The current study sample included patients who received an initial stroke diagnosis in one of 1262 general practices in Germany between 2006 and 2015 (index date). Patients without stroke were matched (1:1) to patients with stroke by age, gender, index year, and 16 comorbidities diagnosed in the 12 months prior to the index date using a propensity score method. The main outcome of the study was the risk of cancer as a function of stroke within 10 years of the index date.
The stroke and non-stroke groups included 9579 men and 9089 women. After 10 years of follow-up, 29.3% of men with stroke and 23.8% of those without stroke developed any of the included types of cancer (log-rank p value < 0.001). During the same time, the prevalence of cancer was 25.0% in women with stroke and 20.5% in women without stroke (log-rank p value < 0.001). There was a positive association between stroke and any cancer in men (hazard ratio [HR] = 1.18, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.09–1.28) and in women (HR = 1.22, 95% CI 1.12–1.34). This association was significant for cancers of respiratory and intrathoracic organs in men and women and for cancers of digestive organs in men.
This study, including more than 37,000 patients from Germany, found that stroke was associated with an increased cancer risk.
KeywordsCancer risk Stroke survivors General practices Retrospective study
Professional English language editing services were provided by Claudia Jones, MA, Radford, Virginia, United States.
The authors have received no financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
Both authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.
German law allows the use of anonymous electronic medical records for research purposes under certain conditions. According to this legislation, it is not necessary to obtain informed consent from patients or approval from a medical ethics committee for this type of observational study that contains no directly identifiable data. Because patients were only queried as aggregates and no protected health information was available for queries, no IRB approval was required for the use of this database or the completion of this study.
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