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Gastroenterol Clin Biol. 2010 Oct;34(10):541-8. doi: 10.1016/j.gcb.2010.03.017. Epub 2010 Aug 23.

Application of ANAES guidelines for colonoscopy in France: a practical survey.

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Service de gastroentérologie, CHU Cochin, faculté René-Descartes-Paris-V, 27 rue du Faubourg-Saint-Jacques, Paris, France.



In 2004, the French health authorities published guidelines on the indications for colonoscopy. However, no study has evaluated the awareness of healthcare practitioners of these guidelines. The aim of this study was to determine the level of awareness of the ANAES guidelines among French gastroenterologists.


A questionnaire comprising 20 multiple choice questions (MCQ) was presented to a group of 79 gastroenterologists between February and June in 2008. The questions covered screening tests for colon cancer (one question), endoscopic mucosal resection (two questions) and the ANAES guidelines (17 questions). According to the number of colonoscopies performed per year (less than 100, 100-500, more than 500), the answers to these questions were analyzed separately.


Among the practitioners carrying out less than 100, 100-500 and more than 500 colonoscopies per year, the guidelines for colon cancer screening were known by 33, 50 and 56%, respectively, the quality criteria for endoscopic mucosal resection by 0, 0 and 3.7%, respectively, and the ANAES guideline indications for colonoscopy by 34.3, 51.2 and 48.9%, respectively (P<0.001). The ANAES guidelines were significantly better known by practitioners who were performing more than 100 colonoscopies per year, while the indications for control colonoscopy were less often correctly anticipated. No differences were found concerning postponed indications.


The ANAES guidelines consists of the following elements: (1) awareness of the ANAES guidelines is poor, with control colonoscopy being correctly anticipated in just over a third of the gastroenterologists; (2) performing more than 100 colonoscopies per year improves knowledge of the ANAES guidelines; and (3) the ANAES guidelines need to be simplified and should be covered by continuing medical education.

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