Current CRC screening guidelines dated, study suggests — 3 insights

Eric Oliver - Print  |

A study published in Gastroenterology suggested colorectal cancer guidelines calling for screening to begin when a patient turns 50 were potentially outdated.

Seattle-based Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center researchers analyzed 9,748 CRC cases and 10,590 control cases to create risk determination models based on 19 behavioral patterns and 63 CRC-associated genetic markers. Researchers used the model to project 10-year absolute CRC risk and to craft recommendations.

Here's what you should know:

1. Research suggested 15 percent of men with no history of the disease should begin screening before 45, Scientific American reports.

2. Fifty percent of women, however, could wait until they turn 56, because of the late-developing nature of the disease in women. Ten percent of women could wait to start screening as late as 64.

3. The research also challenged assumptions about individuals with a family history of CRC. Researchers said most women and 15 percent of men could wait until 50 for a colonoscopy.

Researchers said their risk models, "determine risk of CRC and starting ages for screening with greater accuracy than the family history only model, which is based on the current screening guideline. These scoring systems might serve as a first step toward developing individualized CRC prevention strategies."

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