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CRC Screening Results: Patient Comprehension and Follow-up

CRC Screening Results: Patient Comprehension and Follow-up

Cancer Control 26(1): 1073274819825828

Fecal occult blood tests are recommended for colorectal cancer screening, but are only effective if colonoscopy follows positive results. Patients with positive results often do not complete follow-up. This study examined the association between patient comprehension and adherence to colonoscopy after positive FIT (Fecal Immunochemical Test). Five hundred twenty-two patients completed a telephone questionnaire regarding the FIT and its implications 120 days after a positive result. Patients were asked whether they had the test, received the results, and required follow-up. These questions were used to identify the degree to which patients understood medical information. A participant who answered "no" to any question was defined as having "low comprehension" regarding the FIT, and participants who answered "yes" to all 3 questions, as having "high comprehension". Comprehension and colonoscopy adherence were significantly associated. Adherence to colonoscopy was significantly higher among participants with high comprehension, after adjusting for gender, age, education, ethnicity, and socio-economic status. This study demonstrates a link between health comprehension and patient follow-up after positive FIT and contributes to understanding the implications of health comprehension in terms of health promotion. We recommend patients undergoing screening tests receive clear explanations regarding need for follow-up of positive results thus reducing health disparities associated with health comprehension.

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Accession: 066446404

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PMID: 30704290

DOI: 10.1177/1073274819825828

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