Fatty pancreas independently associated with development of diabetes: Study

Published On 2021-10-21 04:45 GMT   |   Update On 2021-10-21 04:44 GMT

Fatty pancreas is independently associated with subsequent diabetes mellitus (DM), suggests a study published in Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology.

Although the association between fatty pancreas and metabolic syndrome has been suggested in retrospective studies, long-term prospective data on the effect of the fatty pancreas on various metabolic outcomes are lacking.

A team of researchers from China conducted a study to prospectively investigate the association between fatty pancreas and the development of major metabolic outcomes.


A total of 631 subjects from a population study using fat–water magnetic resonance imaging to quantify pancreatic and liver fat content from 2008 to 2010 were followed up prospectively until December 2020 (mean follow-up time, 11.1 ± 1.1 y). Subjects with significant alcohol intake and diabetes mellitus (DM) at baseline were excluded. Incidence of newly diagnosed diabetes mellitus (DM), hypertension, dyslipidemia, ischemic heart disease, cardiovascular accidents, pancreatic cancer, and mortality were evaluated.


The results of the study are as follows:

  • Among the total of 631 subjects, 93 (14.7%) reported having a fatty pancreas.
  • The fatty pancreas group had a higher incidence of diabetes mellitus (DM), hypertension, and dyslipidemia during long-term follow-up evaluation.
  • Individuals with both fatty liver and pancreas had the highest diabetes mellitus (DM) incidence, followed by fatty liver only and fatty pancreas only groups.
  • The fatty pancreas was associated independently with diabetes mellitus (DM), but not hypertension or dyslipidemia on multivariate analysis.
  • Each percentage increase of pancreatic fat increased the risk of incident DM by 7%.
  • No participants developed pancreatic cancer during the follow-up period.

Thus, the researchers concluded that the fatty pancreas is associated independently with subsequent diabetes mellitus (DM) development, but not hypertension or dyslipidemia.


A study named, "Fatty Pancreas Is Independently Associated With Subsequent Diabetes Mellitus Development: A 10-Year Prospective Cohort Study" by Chan T et al. published in the Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology.



Article Source : Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology

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