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Is Parkinson’s Disease Associated With Development of Skin Cancer?

By: Julia Fiederlein
Posted: Tuesday, May 5, 2020

Yong-Gyu Park, PhD, of The Catholic University of Korea, and colleagues, aggregated data to examine the association between Parkinson’s disease and skin cancer risk. This nationwide population-based study, which was published in the Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology, suggested that patients with Parkinson’s disease may be at increased risk of skin cancer development.

“Although a few studies reported that Parkinson’s disease patients show increased prevalence of non-melanoma skin cancer compared with the general population, the relation with non-melanoma skin cancer is less pronounced compared with melanoma,” the investigators commented.

Using data from the National Health Insurance Claims records of Korea from January 2010 through December 2015, the researchers identified 70,780 patients for the Parkinson’s disease group and 353,900 patients for the control group without Parkinson’s disease. The age- and sex-matched control group consisted of five patients for every patient in the investigational group. Skin cancer occurrence in both groups was recorded until December 31, 2017. Gender, age, household income, and comorbidities were factored into the analysis.

A total of 209 skin cancers were found in the group of patients with Parkinson’s disease, and 891 skin cancers were found in the control group. The crude incidence rates of skin cancer per 1,000 patients were 0.785 and 0.669, respectively. The investigators noted that, after adjustment for gender, age, household income, and comorbidities, the hazard ratio of skin cancers in patients with Parkinson’s disease was 1.169 compared with the control group. Korean females older than age 65 with Parkinson’s disease appeared to have a higher risk of non-melanoma skin cancer development than the control group, with a hazard ratio of 1.305. Additionally, the investigators reported an increased prevalence of melanoma in Korean males older than age 65 with Parkinson’s disease.

Disclosure: The study authors reported no conflicts of interest.



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