In the United States, colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer diagnosed among men and women, and the second leading cause of death from cancer.
|Clinicians should make patients aware of the full range of screening options|
Colorectal cancer largely can be prevented by the detection and removal of adenomatous polyps.
Survival is significantly better when colorectal cancer is diagnosed while still localized.
The American Cancer Society, the US Multi-Society Task Force on Colorectal Cancer, and the American College of Radiology met between 2006 and 2007.
The organizations developed consensus guidelines for the detection of adenomatous polyps and colorectal cancer in asymptomatic average-risk adults.
Dr Bernard Levin and colleagues from the USA updated each organization's guidelines.
Screening tests were grouped into those that primarily detect cancer early, and those that can detect cancer early and also can detect adenomatous polyps.
This provides a greater potential for prevention through polypectomy.
Dr Levin's team concluded, "When possible, clinicians should make patients aware of the full range of screening options."
"However, at a minimum they should be prepared to offer patients a choice between screening tests."
"Choices should be offered on screening tests that are primarily effective at early cancer detection, early cancer detection, and cancer prevention through the detection and removal of polyps."
"It is the strong opinion of these 3 organizations that colon cancer prevention should be the primary goal of screening."