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New guidelines update recommendations on colorectal cancer screening
Date:3/6/2008

March 6, 2008 A new guideline on colorectal cancer screening released today by an expert group representing a broad spectrum of health care organizations, including the American College of Gastroenterology (ACG), the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ASGE) and the American Cancer Society (ACS), offers recommendations for various alternatives for colorectal cancer detection and states a strong preference for screening tests that can prevent colorectal cancer. The ASGE and the ACG are members of the U.S. Multi-Society Task Force on Colorectal Cancer and were participants in the guideline development process.

What distinguishes these new guidelines is an emphasis on the importance and value of preventing colorectal cancer, which GI physicians applaud, said Amy E. Foxx-Orenstein, D.O., FACG, president of the ACG.

We know that 50 percent of Americans who should be getting screening for this largely preventable disease are not, said Grace H. Elta, M.D., FASGE, president of the ASGE. The data show that screening saves lives and efforts to increase colon cancer awareness and screening will help patients through earlier detection.

Both the ASGE and the ACG want the public to be aware that the guidelines stated preference for tests that prevent colorectal cancer supports the groups longstanding positions that colonoscopy is the preferred screening strategy for colorectal cancer. Because of its excellent sensitivity in detecting polyps and its potential for removing them and breaking the sequence of polyp to cancer in a single diagnostic and therapeutic intervention, colonoscopy is one of the most powerful preventive tools in clinical medicine.

Several tests are among the recommended alternatives including stool tests that detect colorectal cancer but not its precursor, colon polyps, and structural examinations of the colon by endoscopic procedures such as flexible sigmoidoscopy and colonoscopy, as well as radiolo
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Contact: Anne-Louise Oliphant
mediaonly@acg.gi.org
301-263-9000
American College of Gastroenterology
Source:Eurekalert

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