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The influence on survival of glucocorticoid induced diabetes in cancer patients with metastatic spinal cord compression

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Background and purpose: The influence of glucocorticoid induced hyperglycemia on survival in patients with metastatic spinal cord compression (MSCC) is unknown.

Materials and methods: In a prospective, observational cohort study 131 patients with MSCC referred to radiotherapy, 30 Gray (Gy) in 10 fractions, and treated with ≥100 mg prednisolone a day were followed with daily blood glucose measurements during radiotherapy.

Results: During follow-up a total of 56 patients 43% (95% CI = 35-52%) presented plasma glucose values diagnostic of diabetes. Sixteen patients who developed diabetes were treated with insulin, 12% (95% CI = [6%; 18%]) of the total population. The patients developing diabetes with need for insulin therapy during glucocorticoid therapy had a significantly increased mortality compared to those with normal glucose metabolism and with diabetes without need for therapy, hazard ratio = 2.1 (95% CI = 1.08-4.09, p = 0.0285).

Discussion: To our knowledge this is the first prospective study to describe the influence of glucocorticoid induced diabetes on survival in patients with MSCC from different primary tumors.

Conclusions: The results indicate that development of diabetes during high-dose glucocorticoid therapy needing insulin treatment in patients with MSCC from different primary tumors is associated with reduced survival.

Original languageEnglish
JournalClinical and Translational Radiation Oncologi
Volume11
Pages (from-to)19-25
Number of pages7
ISSN2405-6308
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018

ID: 54881976