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Rev Esp Enferm Dig. 2008 Jun;100(6):343-8.

[Colonoscopic findings from a pilot screening study for colorectal cancer in Catalonia].

[Article in Spanish]

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  • 1Servicio de Prevencion y Control del Cancer, Institut Catala d'Oncologia, Barcelona.



to evaluate lesions detected in two screening rounds performed in a pilot screening programme for colorectal cancer in Catalonia, Spain.


a colorectal cancer screening programme was initiated in 2000. The target population included men and women aged 50-69 years. Screening consisted of biennial guaiac-based fecal occult blood testing (FOBT), and colonoscopy for participants with a positive FOBT. Any polyps found were removed, and biopsies were performed for any masses.


colonoscopies were performed in 442 of 495 people with positive FOBT. In 213 (48.2%), 36 invasive cancers, 121 high-risk adenomas, 29 low-risk adenomas, and 27 hyperplastic polyps were diagnosed. Lesion size was smaller than 10 mm in 25.8% of cases. Most detected lesions (37.2%) were located in the distal colon, followed by the proximal colon (5.7%) and both locations (5.2%). Advanced neoplasm was significantly associated with male gender and distal location. The prevalence of advanced proximal neoplasms among patients with no distal polyps was 5.1%.


the most common lesions detected by colonoscopy were high-risk adenomas located in the distal colon. FOBT is a suitable method for detecting small precancer lesions during population screening, and is thus a key factor in reducing the incidence of colorectal cancer.

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