MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Chia-Hung Kao, MD
Graduate Institute of Clinical Medicine Science and School of Medicine, College of Medicine, China Medical University, Taiwan.
MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study?
Answer: Colonic diverticular disease and colorectal cancer shared certain characteristics. Some previous studies aimed to identify their epidemiological correlation. However, their results were discrepant and insufficiently strong to draw firm conclusion. In our nationwide population-based retrospective cohort study, we found that the previously diagnosed colonic diverticular disease is not associated with an elevated risk of colorectal cancer after the first year of a diagnosis of colonic diverticular disease (adjusted HR, 0.96). The increased risk in the first year may be due to misclassification and screening effect.
MedicalResearch.com: Were any of the findings unexpected?
Answer: Hypertension, hyperlipidemia, and diabetes mellitus were very common chronic disease. They were also risk factors for colorectal cancer. We expected they had more significant impact on increased colorectal cancer in patients with diverticular disease than those without. However, in our current study, the risk of colorectal cancer was not further enhanced by the comorbidities. While no previous studies addressed this issue, the interaction among these chronic diseases, diverticular disease and colorectal cancer was still unknown.
MedicalResearch.com: What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?
Answer: Clinicians should be aware that patients with colorectal cancer might be misclassified as colonic diverticular disease at first. We suggested that these patients should be closely followed and carefully selected for colonoscopy. For patients with colonic diverticular disease, regular follow up is recommended for at least 1 year.
MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?
Answer: The incidence rates of colonic diverticular disease and colorectal cancer varies worldwide. Our result is from Taiwan and may be different from those in other countries. Further research on different races is recommended.