Performing a colonoscopy after a positive fecal immunochemical test can improve patient outcomes, according to a study published in the journal Gut.
A fecal immunochemical test-based colorectal cancer screening program in Italy invited people ages 50 to 69 with a positive test and provided them with a diagnostic colonoscopy. The study, published March 31, compared the 10-year cumulative colorectal cancer incidence and mortality among those with positive fecal immunochemical tests who completed a diagnostic colonoscopy within the program and those who did not. The study used the Kaplan-Meier estimator and Cox-Aalen models.
The 10-year cumulative incidence of colorectal cancer was 44.7 per 1,000 in those who received colonoscopies and 54.3 per 1,000 in those who did not. The cumulative mortality for each group was 6.8 per 1,000 and 16.0 per 1,000, respectively.
The study found the risk of dying of colorectal cancer for the group that did not receive the colonoscopy was 103 percent higher than those who did.