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NIH study finds sigmoidoscopy reduces colorectal cancer rates
Date:5/21/2012

the screening group had a 21 percent lower incidence of colorectal cancer overall and a 26 percent lower rate of colorectal cancer mortality than participants in the usual care group. This means that, over the course of 10 years, if 1,000 people followed the PLCO protocol of two sigmoidoscopy screenings, there would be approximately three fewer new cases and one fewer death from colorectal cancer than in a comparable group not receiving regular screenings. The incidence of distal colorectal cancer was reduced by 29 percent, and mortality from distal colorectal cancer was reduced by 50 percent, in the screening group. While there was no statistically significant decline in deaths from proximal colorectal cancer, the incidence of proximal colorectal cancer was reduced by 14 percent in the screening group.

"This is the second major trial that has shown that sigmoidoscopy is effective in reducing the risk of dying of colorectal cancer. Sigmoidoscopy is less invasive than colonoscopy and carries a lower risk of the colon being perforated, which may make it more acceptable as a screening test to some patients," said Barnett Kramer, M.D., director of NCI's Division of Cancer Prevention. "There are several effective screening tests for colorectal cancer, and the most effective screening test is the one that people choose to take."

Screening by sigmoidoscopy detected 24 percent of the colorectal cancers that were diagnosed in the screening group. Another 60 percent were detected by symptoms or by screening performed outside of the PLCO protocol or were found more than one year after a screening examthe cutoff for defining a cancer as screen detectedin participants who had at least one screening exam, and the remaining 16 percent developed in participants assigned to the screening group who never actually underwent screening. Of the colorectal cancers that were det
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Contact: NCI Press Officers
ncipressofficers@mail.nih.gov
301-496-6641
NIH/National Cancer Institute
Source:Eurekalert  

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NIH study finds sigmoidoscopy reduces colorectal cancer rates
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