Screening and early diagnosis of colorectal cancer

  • Paul H. Sugarbaker
Part of the Cancer Treatment and Research book series (CTAR, volume 33)


Screening devices, if accepted by a large segment of the population, can profoundly decrease the incidence of a disease process. Institution of wide spread use of the pelvic examination and Papanicolaou’s smear have been accompanied by a profound decrease in the incidence of cervical cancer. In this disease process, a premalignant lesion known as carcinoma in situ, is present. This is detected by the Papanicolaou smear and leads to cauterization of the cervical epithelium in order to interrupt the transition of in situ cancer to invasive malignancy [1]. In Japan, flexible fiberoptic upper gastrointestinal endoscopy has led to marked improvement in survival of patients undergoing surgery for gastric cancer [2]. In Japan the survival following surgery for gastric cancer approaches 50%. In the United States where the disease is usually diagnosed only after severe symptoms occur, it is accompanied by a less than 20% 5-year survival. In this instance, patient and physician awareness of the disease process plus a fiberoptic endoscope to detect early cancer has led to a marked improvement in the survival of patients with this disease.


Colorectal Cancer Ulcerative Colitis Large Bowel Flexible Sigmoidoscopy Familial Polyposis 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, Boston 1987

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  • Paul H. Sugarbaker

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