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Defeat Diabetes
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Fewer Pap Smears, Mammograms for Diabetic Women

Posted: Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Women with diabetes are less likely to get important cancer screening tests than women without diabetes, new research confirms.

Dr. Rodrigo Jimenez-Garcia and colleagues from Rey Juan Carlos University in Alcorcon, Spain analyzed data on 12,429 women eligible for mammography (women 40 and older) and 13,739 eligible for Pap smears (women 18 to 69 years old).

Overall, about 62 percent of eligible women without diabetes had mammography in the past two or three years, compared to 58 percent of women with diabetes.

Among the women eligible for Pap smears, roughly 66 percent of those without diabetes and 62 percent of those with diabetes had had the test recently.

Once the researchers adjusted for the women's age, educational level, obesity, and other factors that could influence both diabetes risk and the likelihood of having cancer screening, they found that the women with diabetes were still significantly less likely to have been screened for breast or cervical cancer.

Diabetic women were 16 percent less likely to have had a mammogram and 18 percent less likely to have had a Pap smear compared to women without diabetes.

These findings from Spain mirror findings from North America indicating that women with diabetes are less likely to get a mammogram or Pap smear as recommended, the researchers note.

Source: Diabetes In Control: Diabetes Care, August 2009.

 
 
 
 
 
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