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Colorectal cancer screening with colonoscopy or computed tomography colonography

The latest issue of Endoscopy investigates time requirements and health effects of participation in colorectal cancer screening with colonoscopy or computed tomography colonography.

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Time limitations and unwanted health effects may act as barriers to participation in colorectal cancer screening.

Dr van Dam and colleagues from the Netherlands measured the time requirements and health effects of colonoscopy and computed tomography colonography screening.

The team performed a prospective diary study in a consecutive sample within a randomized controlled colorectal cancer screening trial, comparing primary colonoscopy and computed tomography colonography screening for average-risk individuals aged 50 - 74 years.

The diary ended when all screening-related complaints had passed.

The researchers reported that the diary was returned by 75% of colonoscopy, and 75% of computed tomography colonography screenees.

CT colonography was associated with a 2-fold longer duration of screening-related symptoms
Endoscopy

The median interval between leaving home and returning from the examination was longer for colonoscopy than for computed tomography colonography.

The team of doctors found that the time to return to routine activities was longer after colonoscopy than after computed tomography colonography.

The duration of screening-related symptoms after the examination was shorter for colonoscopy than for computed tomography colonography.

The research team assessed that abdominal complaints were reported more frequently after computed tomography colonography.

Anxiety, pain, and quality of life worsened during the screening process, with no differences between the 2 examinations.

Compared with colonoscopy, computed tomography colonography screening required less time and allowed screenees to return to their daily activities more quickly.

The doctors noted that in contrast, computed tomography colonography was associated with a 2-fold longer duration of screening-related symptoms.

Dr van Dam's team concludes, "Feelings of anxiety, pain, and quality of life scores were similar during colonoscopy and computed tomography colonography screening."

"These results should be incorporated into cost-effectiveness analyses of colorectal cancer screening techniques."

Endoscopy 2013; 45(03): 182-188
06 March 2013

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