Women may be able to undergo virtual colonoscopy for colorectal cancer five to 10 years later, researchers found.
Results appeared online June 10 in CANCER.
To assess at what age virtual colonoscopies should first be performed, researchers studied 7,620 patients referred for a first-time screening with virtual colonoscopy from 2004 to 2011. A total of 276 patients (3.6%) were diagnosed with advanced cancer. Older age and male sex were associated with the possibility for average-risk individuals to have clinically meaningful polyps detected by virtual colonoscopy, while body mass index and a family history of cancer were not.
The researchers determined that 51 women under 55 years of age would need to be screened to detect one case of advanced neoplasia, compared with only 10 men older than 65 years.
The best age for men to have a virtual colonoscopy is between 55 and 60 years, while women can wait until age 60. Authors noted that the findings may help establish guidelines for the use of virtual colonoscopy.