Fraser CG, Mathew CM, Mowat NA, Wilson JA, Carey FA, Steele RJEvaluation of a card collection-based faecal immunochemical test in screening for colorectal cancer using a two-tier reflex approach. Gut 56: 1415-1418

Scottish Bowel Screening Centre Laboratory, Kings Cross, Dundee DD3 8EA, UK.
Gut (Impact Factor: 14.66). 11/2007; 56(10):1415-8. DOI: 10.1136/gut.2007.119651
Source: PubMed


The guaiac faecal occult blood test (gFOBT) has been proved as a screening investigation for colorectal cancer, but has disadvantages. Newer faecal immunochemical tests (FITs) have many advantages, but yield higher positivity rates and are expensive. A two-tier reflex follow-up of gFOBT-positive individuals with a FIT before colonoscopy has been advocated as an efficient and effective approach.
A new simple and stable card collection FIT was evaluated.
1124 individuals who were gFOBT positive were asked to provide samples. 558 individuals participated, 320 refused and 246 did not return samples. No evidence of sampling bias was found. 302 individuals tested FIT negative and 256 tested positive. In the 302 FIT-negative individuals, 2 (0.7%) had cancer and 12 (4.0%) had large or multiple (high-risk) adenomatous polyps. In contrast, of 254 positive individuals, 47 (18.5%) had cancer and 54 (21.3%) had high-risk polyps. 93 (30.8%) of the FIT-negative individuals had a normal colonoscopy, but only 34 (13.4%) of the FIT-positive individuals had no pathology. Sensitivity, specificity, and positive and negative likelihood ratios (and 95% CIs) for cancer were 95.9% (84.8 to 99.3), 59.2% (54.7 to 63.5), 2.35 (2.08 to 2.65) and 0.07 (0.02 to 0.27), and for cancer and high-risk polyps were 87.8% (80.1 to 92.9), 65.3% (60.6 to 69.7), 2.53 (2.19 to 2.93) and 0.19 (0.11 to 0.31), respectively.
A two-tier reflex screening algorithm, in which gFOBT-positive participants are tested with a FIT, is effective in identifying individuals at high risk of significant colorectal neoplasia. This strategy is transferable across different FIT formats. This approach has been adopted for the Scottish Bowel Screening Programme.

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Available from: Robert Steele, Apr 24, 2014
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    • "Moreover, their sensitivity to detect: CRC (15 cohort studies) is 2–98%; any adenoma (5 cohort studies) is 4–63%; and adenomas of >1 cm (4 cohort studies) are 28–67%. Specificity is estimated at: 89–99% to detect CRC; 89–98% to detect any adenoma; 93–97% to detect advanced adenomas.96 "
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    ABSTRACT: Cancer is a worldwide problem as it will affect one in three men and one in four women during their lifetime. Colorectal cancer (CRC) is the third most frequent cancer in men, after lung and prostate cancer, and is the second most frequent cancer in women after breast cancer. It is also the third cause of death in men and women separately, and is the second most frequent cause of death by cancer if both genders are considered together. CRC represents approximately 10% of deaths by cancer. Modifiable risk factors of CRC include smoking, physical inactivity, being overweight and obesity, eating processed meat, and drinking alcohol excessively. CRC screening programs are possible only in economically developed countries. However, attention should be paid in the future to geographical areas with ageing populations and a western lifestyle.19,20 Sigmoidoscopy screening done with people aged 55-64 years has been demonstrated to reduce the incidence of CRC by 33% and mortality by CRC by 43%.
    Clinical Medicine Insights: Gastroenterology 07/2014; 7:33-46. DOI:10.4137/CGast.S14039
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    • "We evaluated a strategy that combined gFOBT with reflex FIT, instead of the more conventional approach of reflex gFOBT. This was because second-line FIT has been shown to limit the number of referrals to colonoscopy [72,73]. Finding effective strategies to “adjust” screening when colonoscopy capacity is limited is very topical [60]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Background Organised colorectal cancer screening is likely to be cost-effective, but cost-effectiveness results alone may not help policy makers to make decisions about programme feasibility or service providers to plan programme delivery. For these purposes, estimates of the impact on the health services of actually introducing screening in the target population would be helpful. However, these types of analyses are rarely reported. As an illustration of such an approach, we estimated annual health service resource requirements and health outcomes over the first decade of a population-based colorectal cancer screening programme in Ireland. Methods A Markov state-transition model of colorectal neoplasia natural history was used. Three core screening scenarios were considered: (a) flexible sigmoidoscopy (FSIG) once at age 60, (b) biennial guaiac-based faecal occult blood tests (gFOBT) at 55–74 years, and (c) biennial faecal immunochemical tests (FIT) at 55–74 years. Three alternative FIT roll-out scenarios were also investigated relating to age-restricted screening (55–64 years) and staggered age-based roll-out across the 55–74 age group. Parameter estimates were derived from literature review, existing screening programmes, and expert opinion. Results were expressed in relation to the 2008 population (4.4 million people, of whom 700,800 were aged 55–74). Results FIT-based screening would deliver the greatest health benefits, averting 164 colorectal cancer cases and 272 deaths in year 10 of the programme. Capacity would be required for 11,095-14,820 diagnostic and surveillance colonoscopies annually, compared to 381–1,053 with FSIG-based, and 967–1,300 with gFOBT-based, screening. With FIT, in year 10, these colonoscopies would result in 62 hospital admissions for abdominal bleeding, 27 bowel perforations and one death. Resource requirements for pathology, diagnostic radiology, radiotherapy and colorectal resection were highest for FIT. Estimates depended on screening uptake. Alternative FIT roll-out scenarios had lower resource requirements. Conclusions While FIT-based screening would quite quickly generate attractive health outcomes, it has heavy resource requirements. These could impact on the feasibility of a programme based on this screening modality. Staggered age-based roll-out would allow time to increase endoscopy capacity to meet programme requirements. Resource modelling of this type complements conventional cost-effectiveness analyses and can help inform policy making and service planning.
    BMC Health Services Research 03/2013; 13(1):105. DOI:10.1186/1472-6963-13-105 · 1.71 Impact Factor
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    • "A different way of managing the challenge of colonoscopy referrals has been adopted in the screening programme in Scotland, where FIT is used for reflex testing following a positive gFOBT. This has reduced the proportion of screened individuals referred for colonoscopy compared with using second-line gFOBT (Fraser et al, 2006, 2007). However, the potential impact of gFOBT with reflex FIT on cancer incidence and mortality does not appear to have been evaluated. "
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    ABSTRACT: Several colorectal cancer-screening tests are available, but it is uncertain which provides the best balance of risks and benefits within a screening programme. We evaluated cost-effectiveness of a population-based screening programme in Ireland based on (i) biennial guaiac-based faecal occult blood testing (gFOBT) at ages 55-74, with reflex faecal immunochemical testing (FIT); (ii) biennial FIT at ages 55-74; and (iii) once-only flexible sigmoidoscopy (FSIG) at age 60. A state-transition model was used to estimate costs and outcomes for each screening scenario vs no screening. A third party payer perspective was adopted. Probabilistic sensitivity analyses were undertaken. All scenarios would be considered highly cost-effective compared with no screening. The lowest incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER vs no screening euro 589 per quality-adjusted life-year (QALY) gained) was found for FSIG, followed by FIT euro 1696) and gFOBT (euro 4428); gFOBT was dominated. Compared with FSIG, FIT was associated with greater gains in QALYs and reductions in lifetime cancer incidence and mortality, but was more costly, required considerably more colonoscopies and resulted in more complications. Results were robust to variations in parameter estimates. Population-based screening based on FIT is expected to result in greater health gains than a policy of gFOBT (with reflex FIT) or once-only FSIG, but would require significantly more colonoscopy resources and result in more individuals experiencing adverse effects. Weighing these advantages and disadvantages presents a considerable challenge to policy makers.
    British Journal of Cancer 02/2012; 106(5):805-16. DOI:10.1038/bjc.2011.580 · 4.84 Impact Factor
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