Is Cancer More Serious If You Also Have Another Disease?

When cancer develops in someone with other diseases, it can be more serious, according to a recent annual report from several national cancer organizations.

“Cancer does not occur in isolation,” says Lawrence Shulman, MD, in commenting on the report. “It occurs in a human being, who may have other medical problems.”

For example, if you have heart disease, obesity, or diabetes in addition to cancer — which doctors call “co-morbidities” — you are more likely to die from your cancer than someone who is dealing with cancer only.

This reinforces the importance of committing to a healthy lifestyle, Shulman says. “We increase our odds of surviving cancer if we take good care of ourselves. And, of course, a healthy lifestyle — not smoking, exercise, and weight control — all reduce the chance of getting cancer in the first place.”

Learn more about how to maintain good health through nutrition and exercise.

Comments Sort By Newest

One thought on “Is Cancer More Serious If You Also Have Another Disease?

  1. Ha! You should check out my husband. He’s a walking medical anomaly. He has severe Asthma, 80-85% Spondy in his LS region. He developed Churg-Strauss syndrome. He later ended up with IGA Multiple myaloma. Then he had prostrate cancer. Both of his eyes have had lens replacements. He has arthritis. He’s constantly in pain. now he is morbidly obese. Lets see, I don’t think I forgot anything. Oh ya, High blood pressure and heart myopathy. There, that should do it.

  2. Ha! You should check out my husband. He’s a walking medical anomaly. He has severe Asthma, 80-85% Spondy in his LS region. He developed Churg-Strauss syndrome. He later ended up with IGA Multiple myaloma. Then he had prostrate cancer. Both of his eyes have had lens replacements. He has arthritis. He’s constantly in pain. now he is morbidly obese. Lets see, I don’t think I forgot anything. Oh ya, High blood pressure and heart myopathy. There, that should do it.

Comments are closed.

    Make An Appointment

    For adults: 877-960-1562

    Quick access: Appointments as soon as the next day for new adult patients

    For children: 888-733-4662

    All content in these blogs is provided by independent writers and does not represent the opinions or advice of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute or its partners.

    Latest Tweets

    Dana-Farber @danafarber
    Attending #BMTTandem18? Join us Wednesday 2/21 from 7-9 pm for the Dana-Farber welcome reception at Hilton Salt Lak… https://t.co/tUkI8DLvrt
    Dana-Farber @danafarber
    RT @ChrisClea: Thanks to @DanaFarber's @DrBOvermoyer's program, this young couple was able to stare down inflammatory breast cancer #ThinkI…
    Dana-Farber @danafarber
    It’s not uncommon for #cancer patients to take to a pen after a diagnosis. Peter Rooney’s taken that to another lev… https://t.co/7pN3gmAtjN

    Republish our posts on your blog

    Interested in sharing one of our stories on your blog? Feel free to republish this content! We just ask that you credit Dana-Farber, link to the original article, and refrain from making edits that change the original context. Questions? Email the editors at insight_blog@dfci.harvard.edu.