How effective is fecal immunochemical testing for colorectal cancer?

A study, published in Gastroenterology, determined how effective fecal immunochemical testing was in detecting colorectal cancer.

Dr. Manon van der Vlugt, of the University of Amsterdam, Dr. Esmee Grobbee of Netherlands-based Erasmus University Medical Centre, and colleagues analyzed 18,716 patients to quantify the effectiveness of FIT testing for colorectal cancer. Researchers collected and analyzed data from a FIT-based biennial CRC screening program conducted in the Netherlands.

Here's what you should know:

1. Of the eligible patients, 3,005 patients had a positive result in one of the four FIT screening rounds.

2. Of the 3,005 patients, CRC was detected in 261 patients.

3. Researchers determined the FIT interval cancer proportion after three rounds of screening was 23 percent.

Researchers concluded among patients screened by FIT, 23 percent developed cancer. They determined FIT detects CRC with 77 percent sensitivity.

They said, "The proportion of FIT interval cancers in FIT screening appears to be lower than that with guaiac fecal occult blood testing."

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