Splenectomy in trauma patients is associated with an increased risk of postoperative type II diabetes: A nationwide population-based study

Shih Chi Wu, Chih Yuan Fu, Chih Hsin Muo, Yen Jung Chang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Citations (Scopus)


Background Animal studies indicate that splenocytes may act as precursors of β-islet secretory cells in the pancreas. This study aimed to assess the risk of postoperative type II diabetes after splenectomy in trauma patients.

Methods We used data from the Taiwan National Health Insurance hospitalized claims. Study 1 included 3,723 patients receiving splenectomy and 3,723 matched patients receiving other types of abdominal surgery. Study 2 included 5,996 patients with spleen injury and 5,996 matched patients with other types of abdominal injury. The hazard ratio for diabetes was estimated using the matched Cox proportional hazard regression model.

Results In trauma patients after surgery, those who received splenectomy had a 2-fold higher risk of diabetes compared with patients without splenectomy after a 3-year follow-up period. In the nonoperative group, there was no difference in diabetes risk between patients with splenic injury and those with other types of injury.

Conclusions Splenectomy was associated with an increased risk of postoperative type II diabetes in trauma patients. Thus, there may be a role for the spleen in the development of diabetes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)811-816
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Surgery
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Nov 1
Externally publishedYes



  • Postoperative diabetes
  • Splenectomy
  • Trauma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery

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