Ireland has the highest mortality rate for intestine malignant neoplastic disease in Western Europe, with over 900 people deceasing from the disease each twelvemonth. Over the past 15 old ages, the incidence of intestine malignant neoplastic disease has increased by 20 per centum. ( Cancer society of Ireland )

In order to cut down the incidence and mortality of intestine malignant neoplastic disease it is imperative that high hazard patients and patients with symptoms/signs of colorectal malignant neoplastic disease are screened adequately.

Colonoscopy is presently the gilded criterion for showing, diagnosing and monitoring of colorectal malignant neoplastic disease every bit good as inflammatory intestine disease. Colonoscopy has the ability non merely to inspect but besides obtain tissue samples and take polyps from the intestine. It usage has led to an extended enlargement of cognition of the natural history of colonic neoplasia. ( Jerome D. Waye 2009 )

Colonoscopy is an expensive and clip devouring resource which is in high demand. It is an invasive process which carries with it the hazard of perforation, hemorrhage and the demand for endovenous sedation. ( Clements, Tawfiq et Al. 2009 ) Therefore, it is indispensable that patients referred for the process are done so suitably to guarantee that those most at hazard are investigated the best usage of limited resources and a high diagnostic output for the process.

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Extensive research has been carried in order to place which colonic symptoms are most likely to correlate with an implicit in carcinoma or adenoma, every bit good as to place those patients who are at a higher hazard so the general population of developing colorectal malignant neoplastic disease. This should move as the footing for testing symptomless persons or mentioning them for diagnostic colonoscopy. This literature reappraisal aims to summarize and measure the grounds for correlativity of clinical symptoms with colonoscopy findings every bit good as the recommendations for colonoscopy, given by the assorted publications.

Search Schemes

An electronic hunt was performed utilizing Pub Med. Combinations of MeSH footings and text words were used. These included “ colonoscopy ” “ indicants ” ” guidelines ” “ anemia ” “ Fe deficientanaemia ” ” diarrhoea ” ” irregularity ” ” rectal/gastrointestinal ” ” bleeding/haemorrhage ” “ screening/surveillance ” and “ colorectal cancer/neoplasm/ ” .Bibliographies, mentions and clinical guidelines were besides searched.

The rubrics and abstracts of all pertinent articles were reviewed and cross referenced. Articles were critically appraised, taking into history the impact factor of the diary, sample size and statistical analysis.


Five surveies were found that aimed to place the hazard of colorectal malignant neoplastic disease posed by peculiar symptoms.

Hamilton et Al performed a big a case-control survey which involved 21 General patterns in the UK. 359 patients with colorectal malignant neoplastic disease and 1744 controls, matched by age, sex and general pattern were studied. This survey concluded that there are 10 characteristics associated with malignant neoplastic disease of the colon/rectum prior to diagnosing. These were identified as rectal hemorrhage, weight loss, abdominal hurting, diarrhea, irregularity, unnatural rectal scrutiny, abdominal tenderness, positive FOB and blood glucose less than 10 mmol/l. The positive predictive values for these symptoms and the 95 % assurance interval were as follows: rectal shed blooding 2.4 % ( 1.9, 3.2 ) ; weight loss 1.2 % ( 0.91, 1.6 ) ; abdominal hurting 1.1 % ( 0.86, 1.3 ) ; diarrhoea 0.94 % ( 0.73, 1.1 ) ; irregularity 0.42 % ( 0.34, 0.52 ) ; unnatural rectal scrutiny 4.0 % ( 2.4, 7.4 ) ; abdominal tenderness 1.1 % ( 0.77, 1.5 ) ; hemoglobin & lt ; 10.0gdla?’1 2.3 % ( 1.6, 3.1 ) ; positive fecal supernatural bloods 7.1 % ( 5.1, 10 ) ; blood glucose & gt ; 10mmol/l 0.78 % ( 0.51, 1.1 ) : The consequences for all symptoms were statistically important that is all P & lt ; 0.001. It is apparent from this survey that shed blooding symptoms, Fe deficient anemia and unnatural rectal scrutiny have highest positive predictive values whereas not shed blooding symptoms such as irregularity, diarrhea and abdominal hurting were identified as characteristics that have much lower positive predictive values for colorectal malignant neoplastic disease. ( W Hamilton 2005 ) .

Many other surveies have voiced similar sentiments to Hamilton et Al, an earlier survey by Rex et Al which reviewed colonoscopy indicants and their output for malignant neoplastic diseases found that shed blooding symptoms and Fe deficient anemia had a significant output for malignant neoplastic diseases. ( Rex 1995 ) This sentiment was once more voiced by a ulterior survey published in the Oxford diary of Medicine which found that 4 % of patients referred for probe of unexplained IDA were diagnosed with a colorectal malignance. ( M.R Stephens 2006 )

A systemic reappraisal published by malignant neoplastic disease research UK which looked at eight surveies and 2323 patients nevertheless, differed in sentiment. They found that in patients with rectal hemorrhage or Iron deficient anemia, no extra “ symptom, mark or diagnostic trial is able to switch the chance of colorectal malignant neoplastic disease to the extent of ” opinion in ” or “ governing out ” the diagnosing of colorectal malignant neoplastic disease with any grade of certainty. This is supported by the grounds that even ruddy flag symptoms such as weight loss and bloody diarrhea, have merely a modest-diagnostic value. ( Olde Bekkink, McCowan et Al. 2010 ) Pepin and Ladabaum et Al found that while in patients with symptoms such as irregularity the output of malignant neoplastic diseases on probe by colonoscopy is similar to that of symptomless patients undergoing testing colonoscopy. ( Pepin and Ladabaum 2002 )

A figure of documents have been published by the American society of Gastroenterologists ( ASGE ) , British Society of Gastroenterologists every bit good as the National Institute of excellence ( NICE ) and other experts in the field of Gastroenterology to urge when it is necessary to mention patients with colonic symptoms, both hemorrhage and non hemorrhage, for probe.


With respect to rectal hemorrhage, merely two big organic structures the ASGE and NICE have published guidelines. These published guidelines nevertheless differ well. The ASGE recommend that all patients with a positive fecal supernatural blood trial should undergo a colonoscopy. ( Davila, Rajan et Al. 2005 ) While NICE guidelines recommend that merely those over the age of 60 should be considered for colonoscopy if rectal hemorrhage is the lone indicant and in add-on it must be present for at least six hebdomads. Meanwhile it recommends that in those aged between 40 and 60, merely those patients who have rectal hemorrhage and a alteration in intestine wont towards looser stools for 6 hebdomads or more should be considered for everyday referral for colonoscopy. Given that the old research has found that diarrhea has a much lower positive predictive value than rectal hemorrhage ( W Hamilton 2005 ) and that besides rectal hemorrhage no other symptom can govern in or govern out colorectal malignant neoplastic disease ( Olde Bekkink, McCowan et Al. 2010 ) , the counsel given by NICE is really surprising and may necessitate updating. Although one could reason that? ? ? ? ? ( REMEMBER NICE IS BASED ON COST ASWELL AND RESOURCE UTILISATION ) .

However, in patients with outlet rectal hemorrhage which is defined as the presence of bright ruddy blood after or during laxation who have no other important indicants for colonoscopy such as a strong household history of colorectal malignant neoplastic disease, flexible sigmoidosopy is sufficient to except important pathology. ( Marderstein and Church 2008 ) This is besides the sentiment of the ASGE nevertheless, they limit it further to include merely those below the age of 40.Research published nevertheless has shown that in patients 40 old ages or younger showing with rectal shed blooding 8.9 % were identified as holding adenomatous polyps. This may propose that in those under 40 probe by colonoscopy may be justified and should be recommended in order to assist forestall farther promotion to adenocarcinoma. ( Acosta, Fournier et Al. 1994 )

Iron lack anemia:

Iron lack anemia has a prevalence of 2-5 % among big work forces and station menopausal adult females in the developed universe. ( A F Goddard 2000 ) . It has been found that shed blooding from the GI piece of land is the most common cause of Iron lack anemia in both grownup work forces and station menopausal adult females ( A F Goddard 2000 ) and frequently it is the lone hint to the diagnosing of colorectal malignant neoplastic disease. It has besides been identified as one of the lone dependable forecasters of colorectal malignant neoplastic disease in a patient ( Olde Bekkink, McCowan et Al. 2010 ) and therefore it is a symptom that should be considered earnestly.

Presently, the BSG and Nice both recommend that an pressing referral for upper and lower GI probes be considered in work forces of any age with unexplained IDA and a Hb of 11g/100 milliliters or below. Besides in non flowing adult females with unexplained IDA and a HB of 10g/100 milliliter or less once more a referral in extremely recommended. Colonoscopy nevertheless is non recommended for pre-menopausal adult females unless there is a history of other colonic symptoms, or a strong household history of colorectal malignant neoplastic disease. This is defined as a first grade relation less than 45 old ages of age or 2 affected foremost degree relations, or if the Fe deficient anemia is relentless. ( A F Goddard 2000 )

Although, no order of probes is specified by the BSG, a retrospective survey by M.R Stephens et Al. which reviewed the consequences of 3798 probes in 2600 patients has found that “ potentially curable GI malignance was diagnosed over 13 times more normally utilizing colonoscopy or Ba clyster vs. OGD “ . Therefore, it would be favorable to look into the lower GI piece of land foremost or instead execute both probes together. ( M.R Stephens 2006 )


Most instances of diarrhea are caused by an ague ego restricting infection. They are highly common and by and large supportive therapy is all that is required. As these infections are short lived, acute diarrhea is non an indicant for colonoscopy. However, if it is chronic-described as 3 hebdomads by ASGE or 6 hebdomads by NICE, endoscopy probe is required. Initial probe can be with flexible sigmoidoscopy, nevertheless if it is non diagnostic or symptoms persist colonoscopy should be performed. ( Shen, Khan et al. 2010 ) No randomised controlled surveies have yet been performed to measure one endoscopic process over the other and hence, it is recommended that clinical determinations be individualised to each patient.


This is a really common symptom and is thought to impact about 20 % of the Irish population.However, NICE have published no recommendations with respect to this symptom and the sensing of colorectal malignant neoplastic disease. Studies in this respect have been conflicting. Some have shown that the output of colonoscopies for irregularity entirely is low and is comparable to with symptomless patients undergoing probe. ( Pepin and Ladabaum 2002 ) . Others, nevertheless, have shown that chronic irregularity is associated with an increased hazard of malignant neoplastic disease. ( Qureshi, Adler et Al. 2005 ) Therefore, the ASGE recommends that those over the age of 50 with chronic irregularity and no old colon malignant neoplastic disease showing should be referred. Those in the younger age group should hold a flexible sigmoidoscopy.

Of importance, irregularity associated with another lower GI symptom has a statistically important increased hazard of important happening on probe by colonoscopy ( Gupta, Holub et Al. 2010 ) .Therefore, ASGE recommends that those with other symptoms such as rectal hemorrhage, positive FOB, weight loss and Fe deficient anemia should be referred for colonoscopy

Non specific symptoms:

Those with non specific abdominal symptoms do non hold any more of a hazard of serious colonic pathology than symptomless patients referred for colonoscopy. ( Liebermann DA 2000 ) .NICE recommends that in patients with ambiguous symptoms, non-invasive probes such as a full blood count may assist in placing the possibility of colorectal malignant neoplastic disease.


There remains a deficiency of clinical surveies measuring the inquiry of results of colonoscopy based on clinical indicant amongst the Irish population. Therefore there is a clear demand for farther surveies in the country. Besides to day of the month, no guidelines have been published by the Irish society of Gastroenterologists to supply counsel for doctors in Ireland as to when referral for colonoscopy is required. The last set of guidelines for referral for colonoscopy were published by ASGE in 2000 and NICE in 2005.As these are slightly out-of-date, for now Irish doctors must trust on clinical expertness and late published literature to find which patients to mention for this much sought after probe.


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