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AJR Am J Roentgenol. 2012 Jun;198(6):1361-6. doi: 10.2214/AJR.11.7671.

Screening CT colonography: multicenter survey of patient experience, preference, and potential impact on adherence.

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  • 1Department of Radiology, University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, Madison, WI 53792-3252, USA.



Prior research indicates CT colonography (CTC) would be a cost-effective colorectal cancer (CRC) screening test if widespread availability were to increase overall CRC screening adherence rates. The primary aims of this multicenter study were to evaluate patient experience and satisfaction with CTC screening and compare preference against screening colonoscopy.


A 12-question survey instrument measuring pretest choice, experience, and satisfaction was given to a consecutive cohort of adults undergoing CTC screening in three disparate screening settings: university academic center, military medical center, and community practice. The study cohort was composed of individuals voluntarily participating in clinical CTC screening programs.


A total of 1417 patients responded to the survey. The top reasons for choosing CTC for screening included "noninvasiveness" (68.0%), "avoidance of sedation/anesthesia" (63.1%), "ability to drive after the test" (49.2%), "avoidance of optical colonoscopy risks" (46.9%), and "identifying abnormalities outside the colon" (43.3%). Only 7.2% of patients reported pain during the CTC examination and only 2.5% reported greater than moderate discomfort. Of 441 patients who had experienced both CTC and optical colonoscopy, 77.1% preferred CTC and 13.8% preferred optical colonoscopy. Of all patients, 29.6% indicated that they may not have undergone optical colonoscopy screening if CTC were not available. Of all patients, 92.9% labeled their overall experience with CTC as "excellent" or "good," and 93.0% indicated they would choose CTC for their next screening.


Respondents reported a very high satisfaction level with CTC, and those who had experienced both modalities indicated a preference for CTC over optical colonoscopy. These results suggest that CTC has the potential to increase adherence to CRC screening guidelines if widely available.

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