Resident Knowledge of Colorectal Cancer Screening Assessed by Web-Based Survey

Stuart Akerman, Scott L. Aronson, Maurice A. Cerulli, Meredith Akerman, Keith Sultan


Background: To evaluate resident knowledge of colorectal cancer (CRC) screening guidelines and to define areas requiring attention.

Methods: A survey was created using three published guidelines for CRC screening. Program directors for internal medicine residency programs were contacted within the metro New York City area to have their residents participate.

Results: Five programs participated, and 115 responses were recorded. For the appropriate testing and interval to screen for CRC, 61/115 residents identified flexible sigmoidoscopy every 5 years, 108/115 identified colonoscopy every 10 years, 16/115 identified double contrast barium enema (DCBE) every 5 years and only 12/115 thought CT-colography every 5 years was appropriate. Only 40/115 respondents appropriately identified fecal occult blood testing (FOBT) administered in the patient’s home annually, while fecal immunohistochemical testing (FIT) annually at home was identified by 8/115 residents.

Conclusion: While most residents seem knowledgeable regarding CRC screening with colonoscopy, many deficiencies remain. FOBT for screening purposes remains undervalued, and confusion about administering the test persists. The distinction between screening and prevention needs further reinforcement.

J Clin Med Res. 2014;6(2):120-126


Resident education; Colorectal cancer; Preventive medicine

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