Polypectomy of Adenomas in the Prevention of Colorectal Cancer: 10 Years' Follow-Up of the Telemark Polyp Study I. A Prospective, Controlled Population Study

Scand J Gastroenterol. 1996 Oct;31(10):1006-10. doi: 10.3109/00365529609003121.


Background: The efficacy of polypectomy in preventing colorectal cancer (CRC) has never been demonstrated in a controlled, prospective study. This must be done by randomization within a population with a high prevalence of colorectal polyps, and the feasibility and safety of endoscopic screening examination is a prerequisite for this type of study.

Methods: The present study is a randomized, controlled study of the feasibility and safety of flexible sigmoidoscopic screening of a normal population sample of 799 men and women aged 50-59 years, findings at 2 and 6 years' colonoscopic follow-up, and the appearance of clinical colorectal cancer (CRC) after 10 years.

Results: The attendance rate was high, and there were no complications. After 10 years 1 of 400 in the screening group had developed CRC (in the group of 76 (19%) not attending for screening examination). Four of 399 controls developed CRC.

Conclusions: Poor yield of polyps at follow-up, slow growth of in situ polyps, and no clinical CRC among screenees after 10 years provides support to infrequent or no colonoscopic follow-up after initial polypectomy in individuals with otherwise average risk of CRC.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adenomatous Polyposis Coli / surgery*
  • Colonoscopy
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / epidemiology
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / pathology
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / prevention & control*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Male
  • Mass Screening
  • Middle Aged
  • Norway
  • Prospective Studies
  • Registries*
  • Survival Rate