Association between improved adenoma detection rates and interval colorectal cancer rates after a quality improvement program

Angela Y. Lam, Yan Li, Dyanna L. Gregory, Joanne Prinz, Jacqueline O'Reilly, Michael Manka, John E. Pandolfino, Rajesh N. Keswani*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


Background and Aims: Although colonoscopy reduces colorectal cancer (CRC) risk, interval CRCs (iCRCs) still occur. We aimed to determine iCRC incidence, assess the relationship between adenoma detection rates (ADRs) and iCRC rates, and evaluate iCRC rates over time concomitant with initiation of an institutional colonoscopy quality improvement (QI) program. Methods: We performed a retrospective cohort study of patients who underwent colonoscopy at an academic medical center (January 2003 to December 2015). We identified iCRCs through our data warehouse and reviewed charts to confirm appropriateness for study inclusion. iCRC was defined as a cancer diagnosed 6 to 60 months and early iCRC as a cancer diagnosed 6 to 36 months after index colonoscopy. We measured the relationship between provider ADRs and iCRC rates and assessed iCRC rates over time with initiation of a QI program that started in 2010. Results: A total of 193,939 colonoscopies were performed over the study period. We identified 186 patients with iCRC. The overall iCRC rate was.12% and the early iCRC rate.06%. Average-risk patients undergoing colonoscopy by endoscopists in the highest ADR quartile (34%-52%) had a 4-fold lower iCRC risk (relative risk,.23; 95% confidence interval,.11-.48) than those undergoing colonoscopy by endoscopists in the lowest quartile (12%-21%). After QI program initiation, overall iCRC rates improved from.15% to.08% (P <.001) and early iCRC rates improved from.07% to.04% (P =.004). Conclusions: We confirmed that iCRC rate is inversely correlated with provider ADR. ADRs increased and iCRC rates decreased over time, concomitant with a QI program focused on split-dose bowel preparation, quality metric measurement, provider education, and feedback. iCRC rate measurement should be considered a feasible, outcomes-driven institutional metric of colonoscopy quality.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)355-364.e5
JournalGastrointestinal endoscopy
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Gastroenterology


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