Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Colonoscopy Significantly Reduces Death From Left-sided Colon Cancer But Not From Right-sided

Date:
December 27, 2008
Source:
American College of Physicians
Summary:
A new study finds that colonoscopy is strongly associated with fewer deaths from colorectal cancer. However, the risk reduction appears to be entirely due to a reduction in deaths from left-sided cancers. According to the study, colonoscopy shows almost no mortality prevention benefit for cancer that develops in the right side of the colon.

A new study finds that colonoscopy is strongly associated with fewer deaths from colorectal cancer. However, the risk reduction appears to be entirely due to a reduction in deaths from left-sided cancers. According to the study, colonoscopy shows almost no mortality prevention benefit for cancer that develops in the right side of the colon. Colorectal cancer is the second-leading cause of cancer death in North America.

The study appears today on the Annals of Internal Medicine Web site and will be printed in the January 6, 2009, issue.

"While colonoscopy remains the gold standard for evaluation of the colon, our study sheds light on some of the real-world limitations of this practice for screening and prevention," said Nancy Baxter, MD, PhD, Colorectal Surgeon and a Researcher at St. Michael's Hospital, who is lead author on the study.

Researchers reviewed health records for persons aged 52 to 90 who received a colorectal cancer diagnosis between 1996 and 2001 and died of colorectal cancer by 2003. These patients were compared to a control group who were selected from the population of Ontario and had not died of colorectal cancer.

According to the researchers, complete colonoscopy was strongly associated with fewer deaths from left-sided colorectal cancer. Conversely, the data showed that colonoscopy seemed to have almost no mortality prevention benefit for right-sided colorectal cancer.

"Colonoscopy is an effective intervention," said David F. Ransohoff, MD, author of an accompanying editorial. "The study results, however, should caution physicians about saying that colonoscopy will reduce the risk of dying from colorectal cancer by 90 percent. A 60 to 70 percent risk-reduction rate seems more reasonable."

The researchers suggest several reasons why colonoscopy may be less effective in preventing death from right-sided colorectal cancer. First, some colonoscopies considered "complete" may not evaluate the entire right colon. Second, bowel preparation may be worse in the right colon. Third, right and left colonic cancers and polyps may differ biologically. Right-sided growths may be less likely to have a fleshy stalk and are occasionally flat, which makes them harder to identify and remove, or they may grow more rapidly.

"Although improvements in the quality of screening colonoscopy may improve detection at the right side, differences in tumor biology may limit the potential to prevent right-sided colorectal cancer deaths with current endoscopic technology. Nevertheless, this study clearly demonstrates that colonoscopy is an effective procedure for the prevention of death from colorectal cancer, it just may not be quite as effective as we've thought in the past." said Dr. Baxter.

A complete colonoscopy is a procedure where a physician inserts a long, flexible tube called a colonoscope up into the patient's rectum to scan the entire colon for potentially cancerous growths. If a polyp or lesion is detected, it can often be removed during the colonoscopy so that no additional procedures or surgery are needed.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American College of Physicians. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American College of Physicians. "Colonoscopy Significantly Reduces Death From Left-sided Colon Cancer But Not From Right-sided." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 27 December 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081215183945.htm>.
American College of Physicians. (2008, December 27). Colonoscopy Significantly Reduces Death From Left-sided Colon Cancer But Not From Right-sided. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081215183945.htm
American College of Physicians. "Colonoscopy Significantly Reduces Death From Left-sided Colon Cancer But Not From Right-sided." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081215183945.htm (accessed July 30, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Generics Eat Into Pfizer's Sales

Generics Eat Into Pfizer's Sales

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 29, 2014) Pfizer, the world's largest drug maker, cut full-year revenue forecasts because generics could cut into sales of its anti-arthritis drug, Celebrex. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Nigeria Ups Ebola Stakes on 1st Death

Nigeria Ups Ebola Stakes on 1st Death

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 29, 2014) Nigerian authorities have shut and quarantined a Lagos hospital where a Liberian man died of the Ebola virus, the first recorded case of the highly-infectious disease in Africa's most populous economy. David Pollard reports Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Running 5 Minutes A Day Might Add Years To Your Life

Running 5 Minutes A Day Might Add Years To Your Life

Newsy (July 29, 2014) According to a new study, just five minutes of running or jogging a day could add years to your life. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Outbreak Poses Little Threat To U.S.: CDC

Ebola Outbreak Poses Little Threat To U.S.: CDC

Newsy (July 29, 2014) The Ebola outbreak in West Africa poses little threat to Americans, according to officials with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins