Surgical Oncology News

This section features a sampling of news related to surgical oncology from the popular press, from press releases received, or SSO news directly pertinent to SSO members.

Can laxative-free colonoscopy improve colon cancer screening rates?

Author: Alice Park, TIME
May 15, 2012

New software can digitally "cleanse" a colon, eliminating the muss and fuss of a standard colonoscopy. Ready to book your appointment?

There's no question that colonoscopy can save lives by detecting colon cancer early, but there are a couple of very good reasons why so few people actually get screened - namely, to get the test, you have to clean out your colon with a laxative and endure having a scope inserted through your rectum.

Virtual colonoscopy, which uses CT scanning technology to take a non-invasive picture of the colon, is an attractive alternative to getting probed, but it still requires a pre-test laxative cleansing the night before the exam. But now researchers at the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) say they have developed computer software that can digitally "cleanse" a virtual colonoscopy test of feces and leave behind only a relatively accurate picture of the colon wall and any potentially cancerous growths. No laxative, no probing - and a high degree of accuracy...

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