• patient and nurse

patient and nurse (Photo : Facebook)

In a new study, Parkinson's disease (PD) was linked to 16 types of cancer in an East Asia population. The medical research was based on insurance data that included over 62,000 new PD patients.

The study group's PD patients were members of Taiwan's National Health Insurance, and were diagnosed with the disease from 2004 to 2010. Also included in the study was a control group of about 124,000 people without PD.

Like Us on Facebook

Pan-Chyr Yang of the National Taiwan University College said that the study linked PD as a risk factor for most cancer varieties in Taiwan.  That did not include the breast, thyroid, or ovarian types, according to India Times.

However, the researchers did find a link between PD and 16 cancer types. They include those in hormones, blood, skin, intestines, lungs, and brains.

Yang explained that his research team's study was unique from previous studies by Western researchers. That is because they focused on the effects of different ethnic groups and social environments.

The study mentions that during the past half century, Western countries conducted 25 or more independent studies linking PD to cancers, according to STGIST. This was based on factors such as diet and lifestyle. Most of the Western studies actually showed a lower risk of developing cancer among PD patients.  

The Taiwanese study's authors noted a key issue related to their research. Other factors could have boosted the link between PD and cancers, such as smoking, pesticide exposure, and genetic makeup.

The researchers are planning future studies about the link between PD and types of cancer. They will determine if the researches' findings are applicable to other populations in East Asia.

Up to one million Americans currently have PD. Meanwhile, each year 60,000 new patients are diagnosed in the United States.

The new study was recently published in the journal JAMA Oncology.