Appearances of screen-detected versus symptomatic colorectal cancers at CT colonography.

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Title: Appearances of screen-detected versus symptomatic colorectal cancers at CT colonography.
Authors: Plumb, AA
Pathiraja, F
Nickerson, C
Wooldrage, K
Burling, D
Taylor, SA
Atkin, WS
Halligan, S
Item Type: Journal Article
Abstract: OBJECTIVES: The aim of this study was to compare the morphology, radiological stage, conspicuity, and computer-assisted detection (CAD) characteristics of colorectal cancers (CRC) detected by computed tomographic colonography (CTC) in screening and symptomatic populations. METHODS: Two radiologists independently analyzed CTC images from 133 patients diagnosed with CRC in (a) two randomized trials of symptomatic patients (35 patients with 36 tumours) and (b) a screening program using fecal occult blood testing (FOBt; 98 patients with 100 tumours), measuring tumour length, volume, morphology, radiological stage, and subjective conspicuity. A commercial CAD package was applied to both datasets. We compared CTC characteristics between screening and symptomatic populations with multivariable regression. RESULTS: Screen-detected CRC were significantly smaller (mean 3.0 vs 4.3 cm, p < 0.001), of lower volume (median 9.1 vs 23.2 cm(3), p < 0.001) and more frequently polypoid (34/100, 34 % vs. 5/36, 13.9 %, p = 0.02) than symptomatic CRC. They were of earlier stage than symptomatic tumours (OR = 0.17, 95 %CI 0.07-0.41, p < 0.001), and were judged as significantly less conspicuous (mean conspicuity 54.1/100 vs. 72.8/100, p < 0.001). CAD detection was significantly lower for screen-detected (77.4 %; 95 %CI 67.9-84.7 %) than symptomatic CRC (96.9 %; 95 %CI 83.8-99.4 %, p = 0.02). CONCLUSIONS: Screen-detected CRC are significantly smaller, more frequently polypoid, subjectively less conspicuous, and less likely to be identified by CAD than those in symptomatic patients. KEY POINTS: • Screen-detected colorectal cancers (CRC) are significantly smaller than symptomatic CRC. • Screening cases are significantly less conspicuous to radiologists than symptomatic tumours. • Screen-detected CRC have different morphology compared to symptomatic tumours (more polypoid, fewer annular). • A commercial computer-aided detection (CAD) system was significantly less likely to note screen-detected CRC.
Issue Date: 5-Apr-2016
Date of Acceptance: 18-Feb-2016
ISSN: 1432-1084
Publisher: Springer Verlag (Germany)
Start Page: 4313
End Page: 4322
Journal / Book Title: European Radiology
Volume: 26
Issue: 12
Copyright Statement: © The Author(s) 2016. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.
Sponsor/Funder: Cancer Research UK
Funder's Grant Number: C8171/A16894
Keywords: CT colonography
Colorectal neoplasms
Computer-assisted diagnosis
Mass screening
Occult blood
Nuclear Medicine & Medical Imaging
1103 Clinical Sciences
Publication Status: Published
Appears in Collections:Division of Surgery
Faculty of Medicine

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