Thursday, November 17, 2011

Alcoholics Prone to Cancer


It is no secret to most people that excessive drinking seriously impacts one’s health. Alcohol addiction starts people down a road that leads to a number of health problems; liver failure, pancreatitis, and “wet brain” are some of the most common. However, a new report has linked alcoholism to a number of forms of cancer. Italian researchers compiled data on nearly 2,300 male and female alcoholics who were treated at the Alcohol Center of Florence between 1985 and 2001.

Finding a higher rate of death among alcoholics than among the general population for multiple types of cancers, particularly cancers of the:
  • pharynx
  • oral cavity
  • liver
  • larynx
  • esophagus
  • rectum
  • pancreas
  • breast

Alcoholics were also more prone to die as a result of:
  • infections
  • diabetes
  • violent crimes

As well as diseases of the:
  • immunological system
  • nervous system
  • cardiovascular system
  • respiratory system
  • digestive system

About 4 percent of all deaths and 5 percent of all diseases worldwide can be linked to alcohol abuse, according to the news release.

"Our study has provided strong evidence that alcohol addiction significantly increases the risk of death from several causes in comparison to the general population in a Mediterranean country...," corresponding author Domenico Palli, head of the nutritional and molecular epidemiology unit at the Cancer Research and Prevention Institute in Florence, said in a journal news release. "Alcohol's role as a 'dietary' carcinogen emerged quite clearly."

Addiction to alcohol is a serious matter, one that takes thousands of lives every year. If you, or someone you know, are suffering from addiction it is best to get help sooner than later if problems like the above listed are to be avoided. Don’t wait until it is too late...

"Clearly alcohol abuse can compromise the structure and functionality of several human organs, thus directly increasing the risk of death," Palli concluded. "Other aspects of the characteristic lifestyle of alcoholics -- smoking, drug abuse, promiscuity and a poor diet -- may contribute to this high-risk pattern together with reduced health-consciousness."

The findings appear online and in the February 2012 print issue of the journal Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research.

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