From the Journals

ASCO issues guideline for early detection, management of colorectal cancer



The American Society of Clinical Oncology has issued a new guideline on the early detection and management of colorectal cancer in people at average risk for colorectal cancer, which was written by Gilberto Lopes, MD, of the University of Miami and his associates on an ASCO expert panel.

The panel assembled by ASCO to write the guideline consisted of medical oncology, surgical oncology, surgery, gastroenterology, health technology assessment, cancer epidemiology, pathology, radiology, radiation oncology, and patient advocacy experts. Guidelines from eight different developers were examined, and recommendations from those guidelines were adapted to form the new ASCO guideline. The guideline was published in the Journal of Global Oncology.

In people who are asymptomatic, are aged 50-75 years, have no family history of colorectal cancer, are at average risk, and are in settings with high incidences of colorectal cancer, the expert panel recommends guaiac fecal occult blood test or fecal immunochemical testing every 1-2 years, flexible sigmoidoscopy every 5 years, a combination of flexible sigmoidoscopy every 10 years and annual stool-based testing, or colonoscopy every 10 years, depending on available resources. The testing strategy for those with positive stool-based testing or flexible sigmoidoscopy is colonoscopy or a double-contrast barium enema if colonoscopy is unavailable.

For patients who have polyps, polypectomy at the time of colonoscopy is recommended, with the option of referral for surgical resection if not suitable for endoscopic resection. When symptoms (iron-deficiency anemia, bleeding, abdominal pain, and/or change in bowel habits) are present, a colonoscopy should be performed if available. If colonoscopy is contraindicated, a double-contrast barium enema can be performed; if endoscopy is contraindicated, CT colonography can be performed.

More information, including a data supplement with additional evidence tables, a methodology supplement with information about evidence quality and strength of recommendations, slide sets, and clinical tools and resources is available at, the guideline noted.

Several members of the expert panel reported conflicts of interest.

SOURCE: Lopes G et al. J Glob Oncol. 2019 Feb 25. doi: 10.1200/JGO.18.00213.

This story was updated on March 4, 2019.

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