Nav: Home

Low complication rates after screening colonoscopy

June 14, 2017

COLOGNE. During colonoscopy screening for bowel cancer and in the four weeks after the procedure, the risk for complications to develop is low. This is the finding of a prospective cohort study conducted in the Saarland region, whose results Nadine Zwink and coauthors report in the current issue of Deutsches Ärzteblatt International (Dtsch Aerztebl Int 2017; 114: 321-7).

Worldwide, bowel cancer is the most common cancer and the fourth most common cause of death in men and women. In Germany, colonoscopy screening as a service covered by the statutory health insurance schemes was introduced in October 2002. However, the associated routine documentation has registered only those complications that occurred immediately after the procedure (2.8/1000 colonoscopies). This may lead to an underestimation of the complications -- ie, perforations and bleeds/hemorrhages -- with delayed manifestation of symptoms.

In order to put a stop to the collection of such possibly unsatisfactory data, the authors from the German Cancer Research Center and from the Saarland cancer registry collected data in 26 practices of 5527 men (48%) and women (52%) who had undergone colonoscopy screening in 2010-13. They were asked to report on complications during and within 4 weeks after the colonoscopy at a follow-up examination, using a questionnaire. 5252 participants completed the questionnaire and were included in the study.

43 participants reported experiencing complications. However, only a small proportion of self-reported complications was confirmed medically; on the other hand, most of those affected were not aware of the bleeds/hemorrhages reported by their doctor. In total, 10 cases of bleeding/hemorrhage were confirmed by doctors, as were two cases of perforation during the colonoscopy, which in total equates to a medically confirmed complication rate of 20/5252=0.38%. Complications affected almost exclusively participants in whom neoplasms had been detected and removed.

For the authors, the study results showed that the complication rate is low, even when carefully considering a 4-week period after the colonoscopy. Especially in participants without colorectal neoplasms, who do not immediately benefit from colonoscopy screening, the rate of complications was found to be extremely low.

Deutsches Aerzteblatt International

Related Colonoscopy Articles:

Will disposable colonoscopy devices replace reusables?
As a disposable version of the instrument used in one of the most common medical procedures in the United States inches closer to widespread availability, a team of Johns Hopkins data researchers is studying the economic and safety implications associated with the devices used to perform colonoscopies.
Sedation method does not affect colonoscopy detection rate
Colon cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in the United States and colonoscopy is the most-used screening tool to detect it.
Blue dye tablet helps identify polyps during colonoscopy
Ingestion of a blue dye tablet during bowel prep for colonoscopy could be a significant advance in the early detection of colorectal cancer (CRC).
Low complication rates after screening colonoscopy
During colonoscopy screening for bowel cancer and in the four weeks after the procedure, the risk for complications to develop is low.
Patients with positive fecal screening test, sooner is better for colonoscopy
The risk of colorectal cancer increased significantly when colonoscopy was delayed by more than nine months following a positive fecal screening test, according to a large Kaiser Permanente study published today in the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Delay in colonoscopy following positive screening test associated with increased risk of colorectal
Among patients with a positive fecal immunochemical test result, compared with follow-up colonoscopy at eight to 30 days, follow-up after 10 months was associated with a higher risk of colorectal cancer and more advanced-stage disease at the time of diagnosis, according to a study published by JAMA.
Colonoscopy prep may improve with some solid foods
There's good news for patients who dread the clear-liquid diet before a colonoscopy.
Knowledge of positive Cologuard test improves colonoscopy performance
An endoscopist's knowledge of a positive Cologuard test improves colonoscopy performance, according to a poster presentation at last week's Digestive Disease Week conference.
New Canadian recommendation against colonoscopy for routine screening of colorectal cancer
Physicians should screen for colorectal cancer in asymptomatic, low-risk adults aged 50 to 74 years every two years using fecal occult blood testing (FOBT), or flexible sigmoidoscopy every 10 years, rather than colonoscopy, according to a new Canadian guideline from the Canadian Task Force on Preventive Health Care in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal).
Virtual colonoscopy an alternative to FOB test & colonoscopy for colorectal cancer?
Colorectal cancer is the third most diagnosed cancer in the world, with population screening being recommended for early disease detection, however, the most optimal method to screen for the disease remains unknown.
More Colonoscopy News and Colonoscopy Current Events

Top Science Podcasts

We have hand picked the top science podcasts of 2019.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Why do we revere risk-takers, even when their actions terrify us? Why are some better at taking risks than others? This hour, TED speakers explore the alluring, dangerous, and calculated sides of risk. Guests include professional rock climber Alex Honnold, economist Mariana Mazzucato, psychology researcher Kashfia Rahman, structural engineer and bridge designer Ian Firth, and risk intelligence expert Dylan Evans.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#540 Specialize? Or Generalize?
Ever been called a "jack of all trades, master of none"? The world loves to elevate specialists, people who drill deep into a single topic. Those people are great. But there's a place for generalists too, argues David Epstein. Jacks of all trades are often more successful than specialists. And he's got science to back it up. We talk with Epstein about his latest book, "Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World".
Now Playing: Radiolab

Dolly Parton's America: Neon Moss
Today on Radiolab, we're bringing you the fourth episode of Jad's special series, Dolly Parton's America. In this episode, Jad goes back up the mountain to visit Dolly's actual Tennessee mountain home, where she tells stories about her first trips out of the holler. Back on the mountaintop, standing under the rain by the Little Pigeon River, the trip triggers memories of Jad's first visit to his father's childhood home, and opens the gateway to dizzying stories of music and migration. Support Radiolab today at