Patients with extensive ulcerative or Crohn's colitis have an increased risk of colon cancer and require colonoscopic surveillance.
Dr Sonia Friedman and colleagues from Massachusetts, USA explored patient attitudes and behavior regarding inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), colonoscopies, and colon cancer risk.
In all, 514 patients with ulcerative colitis or Crohn's disease for at least 7 years and at least one-third of the colon involved participated in this cross-sectional questionnaire study performed at three tertiary referral IBD clinics.
In all, 288 patients were female, 262 had ulcerative colitis, and 252 had Crohn's disease.
The mean age was 48 and mean number of years with symptoms was 20.
|Lifetime risk of developing colon cancer without having routine colonoscopies was 56%|
|Inflammatory Bowel Disease|
The researchers observed that 71% reported “my doctor” as an extensive information source.
The research team found that the mean perceived lifetime risk of developing colon cancer without having routine colonoscopies was 56%.
The researchers developed and validated a scale of 10 important messages that IBD patients remember doctors discussing with them.
Higher scores correlated with better quality of life and positive descriptors of colonoscopies and IBD.
The research team noted that patients with higher scores perceived a higher chance of getting colon cancer without having surveillance colonoscopies, and were more likely to report that the correct surveillance interval is every 2 years.
Dr Friedman's team concludes, "Patients who remember their doctor's messages are more likely to have a positive outlook about colonoscopies and IBD, have a better quality of life, undergo surveillance colonoscopies at the correct interval, and perceive cancer risk more realistically."