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newsline1208.qxp 11/25/2008 1:37 PM Page 10 Newsline Limit colorectal screening in the elderly? THE U.S. Preventive ServicesTask methods. After finding in 2002 © APHP-PSL / PHOTO RESEARCHERS, INC. Force (USPSTF) is calling for an that evidence was insufficient to end to colorectal cancer (CRC) recommend one approach over screening for persons older than another, the USPSTF now asserts 85 years and is recommending that adults aged 50-75 years against routine screening for those should be screened using one of aged 76-85 years. This is the first the following approaches: annual time the USPSTF has indicated an high-sensitivity fecal occult blood age at which people should stop testing, sigmoidoscopy every five being screened for this disease. years with annual fecal occult test- According to the task force,per- ing in between, or colonoscopy sons older than 85 should not be every 10 years. A government gist Mark Delegge, MD, drew screened at all for CRC because Screening may be especially im- task force sees their findings from information the harms of such testing may be portant for people with metabolic little benefit in yielded annually by the National significant and other conditions syndrome,which appears to boost screening those Health Interview Survey.The in- may be more likely to affect the the risk of CRC, according to a older than age vestigators analyzed data from health or well-being of these in- report presented at the recent an- 85 years. approximately 350 individuals re- dividuals. For adults aged 76-85 nual scientific meeting of the porting a history of CRC and years, the benefits of regular American College of Gastroen- nearly 1,200 reporting a history of screening are deemed “small” terology held in Orlando. metabolic syndrome.They found compared with the risks (Ann Two researchers from the Med- that those with metabolic syn- Intern Med.2008;149:627-637). ical University of South Carolina drome were 75% more likely to The update also puts forth new in Charleston — internist
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