Colorectal cancer screening: the potential role of virtual colonoscopy
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Virtual colonoscopy is a promising new technique that combines rapid spiral CT scanning of the abdomen with advanced computer programs capable of re-creating two- and three-dimensional views of the colon and rectum. Recent studies comparing this method with conventional colonoscopy show that virtual colonoscopy already is more accurate than barium enema X-ray studies for the detection of colorectal polyps, and that it approaches the accuracy of colonoscopy for diagnosing advanced lesions. Before virtual colonoscopy can be promoted for population-based screening for colorectal cancer, a number of issues discussed in this review need to be addressed. These include questions of accuracy, availability, acceptability, and cost-effectiveness.
Key wordsvirtual colonoscopy colorectal cancer screening
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