Background: The purpose of this study was to find the factors that may be helpful for differentiating pancreatic cancer-associated diabetes mellitus (PC + DM) from common type 2 diabetes for the early diagnosis of pancreatic cancer. Methods: From January 2008 to August 2013, 171 patients with pancreatic cancer and new-onset diabetes were recruited for the study; 242 age- and gender-matched patients with common type 2 diabetes were also identified as control during the same period. The patient’s characteristics and laboratory parameters were compared between the 2 groups. Results: By multivariate logistic regression analysis, we found that body mass index (BMI), the age of onset of diabetes, hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection, total bilirubin (TBIL), alanine aminotransferase (ALT), creatinine (Cr), apolipoprotein-A1 (APO-A1), and white blood cell (WBC) were independent predictive factors for differentiating PC + DM from common type 2 diabetes; the areas under receiver operating characteristic curves were up to 0.815 for the combination of these 8 markers. Conclusions: These results suggest that BMI, the age of onset of diabetes, HBV infection, TBIL, ALT, Cr, APO-A1, and WBC are factors that could differentiate PC + DM from common type 2 ­diabetes and may be used for early diagnosis of pancreatic cancer.

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