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Diagnostic and Therapeutic Endoscopy
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 681783, 5 pages
Review Article

A Novel Opportunity in Minimally Invasive Colorectal Cancer Therapy: Defining a Role for Endoscopic Submucosal Dissection in the United States

Department of Medicine, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Harvard Medical School, 1st Floor Atrium Suite, 330 Brookline Avenue, Boston, MA 02215, USA

Received 2 August 2013; Accepted 14 September 2013

Academic Editor: Spiros D. Ladas

Copyright © 2013 Jonah Cohen. 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.


Colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer among both men and women in the United States and the second leading cause of cancer death. Endoscopic submucosal dissection (ESD) is an innovative advanced endoscopic therapy for superficial gastrointestinal neoplasms which is rapidly becoming standard of care particularly in Asia. ESD was first developed for the resection of early gastric cancers; yet ESD for colon tumors has gained increasing attention in recent years. The advantage of ESD over conventional endoscopic resection lies in its potential to achieve en bloc resection regardless of tumor size, leading to more precise histological evaluation and greater potential for cure. Selecting appropriate patients for this procedure involves identifying colorectal cancers with nul risk of lymph node spread. For colorectal ESD to engraft in the United States, the prevalence of such early stage lesions must be defined so that centers of excellence can be developed for high volume clinical practice to offer patients the safest and most efficacious outcomes. This review discusses the endoscopic staging of colorectal neoplasms, indications for colorectal ESD, and the epidemiology of early stage ESD-amenable colorectal cancer in America to better define an opportunity for this important minimally invasive therapy.