Do Physician Recommendations for Colorectal Cancer Screening Differ by Patient Age?

Department of Medicine, McGill University Health Centre, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
Canadian journal of gastroenterology = Journal canadien de gastroenterologie (Impact Factor: 1.98). 08/2007; 21(7):435-8.
Source: PubMed


Colorectal cancer screening is underutilized, resulting in preventable morbidity and mortality. In the present study, age-related and other disparities associated with physicians' delivery of colorectal cancer screening recommendations were examined. The present cross-sectional study included 43 physicians and 618 of their patients, aged 50 to 80 years, without past or present colorectal cancer. Of the 285 screen-eligible patients, 45% received a recommendation. Multivariate analyses revealed that, compared with younger nondepressed patients, older depressed patients were less likely to receive fecal occult blood test recommendations, compared with no recommendation (OR=0.31, 95% CI 0.09 to 1.02), as well as less likely to receive colonoscopy recommendations, compared with no recommendation (OR=0.14; 95% CI 0.03 to 0.66). Comorbidity and marital status were associated with delivery of fecal occult blood test and colonoscopy recommendations, respectively, compared with no recommendation. In summary, patient age and other characteristics appeared to influence physicians' delivery of colorectal cancer screening and choice of modality.

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