Canadian Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology

Canadian Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology / 2003 / Article

Controversies in Gastroenterology | Open Access

Volume 17 |Article ID 149259 | https://doi.org/10.1155/2003/149259

Anders Ekbom, "Motion - Colonoscopic Surveillance is more Cost Effective than Colectomy in Patients with Ulcerative Colitis: Arguments Against the Motion", Canadian Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, vol. 17, Article ID 149259, 3 pages, 2003. https://doi.org/10.1155/2003/149259

Motion - Colonoscopic Surveillance is more Cost Effective than Colectomy in Patients with Ulcerative Colitis: Arguments Against the Motion

Abstract

There are insufficient data upon which to base recommendations about surveillance colonoscopy and prophylactic colectomy for the prevention of colorectal cancer in patients with ulcerative colitis. Case series, analyses of intermediate results and extrapolations from other patient groups do not constitute reliable evidence. Available studies are susceptible to several biases: the ’healthy worker’ effect, surveillance bias and selection bias. Patients who are enrolled in surveillance programs are more likely to be thoroughly evaluated beforehand, are more likely to be given a diagnosis of dysplasia or neoplasm even when asymptomatic and are more likely to comply with medical treatment, including maintenance anti-inflammatory medication. Comparisons of the rates of neoplasia or death between surveyed and nonsurveyed patients are, therefore, of questionable validity. Prophylactic colectomy, unlike surveillance colonoscopy, prevents death from colorectal cancer. Moreover, it is difficult to keep patients in surveillance programs, and those who withdraw from programs appear to be at high risk of developing cancer. Prophylactic colectomy should be strongly considered for patients with dysplasia, sclerosing cholangitis, longstanding pancolitis (especially if it began early in life) or a positive family history of colorectal cancer. This procedure is underused in clinical practice and is a good alternative to colonoscopic surveillance in high risk patients.

Copyright © 2003 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


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