Journal Club: March 2011

AJR Am J Roentgenol. 2011 Feb;196(2):303-10.

Colorectal cancer screening in women: an underutilized lifesaver.

Chu LL, Weinstein S, Yee J.


OBJECTIVE: Colorectal cancer (CRC) represents the third most common cancer diagnosed and a major cause of cancer-related deaths in women. Despite strong evidence that early screening decreases colorectal cancer incidence and mortality rates, colorectal cancer screening rates in women still lag significantly behind screening rates for breast and cervical cancers. Additionally, women have been found to be less likely than men to undergo CRC screening. This is despite the fact that the overall lifetime risk for the development of colorectal carcinoma is similar in both sexes. Barriers to screening have been found to be different for women compared with men. Screening adherence in women also appears to be associated with various social and demographic factors.

CONCLUSION: CT colonography (CTC) is an accurate, minimally invasive, and well-tolerated examination that is newly endorsed by the American Cancer Society, U.S. Multisociety Task Force, and the American College of Radiology. Improved screening compliance may occur in women with further dissemination of CTC.