In a study published in the Sept. 18, 2008, New England Journal of Medicine, researchers led by Thomas F. Imperiale, M.D., of the Indiana University School of Medicine and the Regenstrief Institute, report that while there still is no definitive answer to the question, they now know the procedure need not be performed any sooner than every five years.
This is the first large study to systematically rescreen a group of average risk individuals who had normal findings from an initial colonoscopy. The rescreening showed that after five years they remained cancer free.
All 1,256 participants in the study were 50 years or older, had undergone a first-time screening with no cancer or pre-cancerous findings, and had no symptoms of colon cancer such as rectal bleeding, change of bowel habits or unexplained weight loss during the 5 year interval between screenings.
"The American Cancer Society and other guideline organizations call for colonoscopic screenings every 10 years but these recommendations are based on extrapolated, indirect data. No study has rescreened a large number of individuals ten years after a normal initial colonoscopy. Our study didn't assess whether the recommendation of 10-year screening interval for colonoscopy is 'right on' but we did determine that the appropriate screening interval can be more than 5 years for average risk individuals. Frankly, we don't know the optimal time interval between screenings," said Dr. Imperiale, who is a gastroenterologist and begins to discuss rescreening with his own patients 7 to 8 years after a previous normal exam unless they develop symptoms or have a family history of colon cancer in a first-degree relative.
The risk of colon cancer increases with age. Changes in lifestyle behaviors such as smoking, alcohol consumption and physical activity also can affect risk.
"I try to tailor my rescreening recommendation to the individual patient. The interval and what rescreening method to use – colonoscopy, virtual colonoscopy, fecal occult blood testing -- are all factors we discuss, said Dr. Imperiale, who is a professor of medicine at the IU School of Medicine and a member of the Indiana University Melvin and Bren Simon Cancer Center.
"Determination of the appropriate frequency of rescreening for persons with normal findings on initial screening colonoscopy could have a substantial effect on the cost of colonoscopy and the capacity to provide it," the study notes. And, adds Dr. Imperiale, who is a clinical epidemiologist and an affiliate investigator of the Center on Implementing Evidence-based Practices at the Roudebush VA Medical Center, it may impact the likelihood that individuals will return for rescreening.
According to the American Cancer Society, "colorectal cancer is the third leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States when men and women are considered separately, and the second leading cause when both sexes are combined. It is expected to cause about 49,960 deaths (24,260 men and 25,700 women) during 2008."
In addition to Dr. Imperiale, authors of the study are Elizabeth A. Glowinski, R.N., Indianapolis Gastroenterology Research Foundation; Ching Lin-Cooper, B.S., IU School of Medicine; Gregory N. Larkin, M.D., Eli Lilly; James D. Rogge, M.D., Indianapolis Gastroenterology Research Foundation; and David F. Ransohoff, M.D., University of North Carolina.
The study was funded, in part, by the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.
Cindy Fox Aisen | EurekAlert!
Self-organising system enables motile cells to form complex search pattern
07.05.2019 | Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster
Mouse studies show minimally invasive route can accurately administer drugs to brain
02.05.2019 | Johns Hopkins Medicine
Engineers at the University of Tokyo continually pioneer new ways to improve battery technology. Professor Atsuo Yamada and his team recently developed a...
With a quantum coprocessor in the cloud, physicists from Innsbruck, Austria, open the door to the simulation of previously unsolvable problems in chemistry, materials research or high-energy physics. The research groups led by Rainer Blatt and Peter Zoller report in the journal Nature how they simulated particle physics phenomena on 20 quantum bits and how the quantum simulator self-verified the result for the first time.
Many scientists are currently working on investigating how quantum advantage can be exploited on hardware already available today. Three years ago, physicists...
'Quantum technologies' utilise the unique phenomena of quantum superposition and entanglement to encode and process information, with potentially profound benefits to a wide range of information technologies from communications to sensing and computing.
However a major challenge in developing these technologies is that the quantum phenomena are very fragile, and only a handful of physical systems have been...
Working group led by physicist Professor Ulrich Nowak at the University of Konstanz, in collaboration with a team of physicists from Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, demonstrates how skyrmions can be used for the computer concepts of the future
When it comes to performing a calculation destined to arrive at an exact result, humans are hopelessly inferior to the computer. In other areas, humans are...
Scientists develop a molecular recording tool that enables in vivo lineage tracing of embryonic cells
The beginning of new life starts with a fascinating process: A single cell gives rise to progenitor cells that eventually differentiate into the three germ...
29.04.2019 | Event News
17.04.2019 | Event News
15.04.2019 | Event News
17.05.2019 | Materials Sciences
17.05.2019 | Physics and Astronomy
17.05.2019 | Materials Sciences