Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Faecal occult blood screening reduced the incidence of colorectal cancer

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.

 QUESTION: Does faecal occult blood screening reduce the incidence of colorectal cancer?


Randomised {allocation concealed*}, unblinded,* controlled trial with 18 years follow up.


Minnesota, USA.


46 551 participants who were 50–80 years of age (52% women) and did not have a previous diagnosis of colorectal cancer. Follow up for vital status was 91% at 18 years.


Participants were allocated to annual screening (n=15 532), biennial screening (n=15 550), or usual care (n=15 363). For each screening, which was done from 1976–82 and from 1986–92, participants prepared 2 guaiac impregnated paper slides for each of 3 consecutive stools. The mean rate of compliance was 75% in the annual screening group and 78% in the biennial screening group. Participants with ≥1 positive slide had a …

View Full Text


  • Sources of funding: National Cancer Institute and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

  • For correspondence: Dr J S Mandel, Exponent, 149 Commonwealth Drive, Menlo Park, CA 94025, USA. Fax +1 650 688 1799.

  • * See glossary.

  • Information provided by author.