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MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 1996 Feb 9;45(5):107-10.

Screening for colorectal cancer--United States, 1992-1993, and new guidelines.


Colorectal cancer is the third most commonly diagnosed cancer for both men and women in the United States and is the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths (1). During 1996, approximately 133,500 new cases of colorectal cancer will be diagnosed, and 54,900 persons will die from the disease (1). Recent evidence of the efficacy of colorectal cancer screening to reduce mortality was reviewed by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF), an independent expert advisory panel to the Public Health Service (2). The revised USPSTF recommendations on cancer screening suggest that the risk for colorectal cancer-related mortality can be reduced by the use of specific screening tests (i.e., annual fecal occult blood testing [FOBT] and/or periodic flexible sigmoidoscopy for persons aged > or = 50 years). To estimate the prevalence of colorectal cancer screening practices, CDC analyzed data on use of colorectal cancer screening methods from the 1992 and 1993 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS). This report summarizes the results of that analysis, which documents low rates of use of colorectal cancer screening and underscores the need for efforts to increase screening.

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