CT colonography (CTC) has comparable sensitivity to colonoscopy for polyps >5mm, say researchers in Germany. Their prospective study comparing five screening tests for advanced colonic neoplasia found that the respective sensitivities of colonoscopy, CTC, flexible sigmoidoscopy, faecal immunochemical stool testing (FIT) and faecal occult blood testing (FOBT) were 100 per cent, 96.7 per cent, 83.3 per cent, 32 per cent and 20 per cent. Combining flexible sigmoidoscopy with FIT or FOBT did not increase sensitivity; where stool tests are used, the researchers recommend FIT. A total of 221 adenomas were detected in 307 subjects who completed CTC and colonoscopy; 269 patients provided stool samples for FOBT and FIT.

Graser A, Stieber P, Nagel D et al. Gut 2009;58:241-8

Originally published in the March 2009 edition of MIMS Oncology & Palliative Care.

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