June 12, 2021
4 min read

May top 7 in GI: ACG, colorectal cancer, Digestive Disease Week 2021

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Healio Gastroenterology presents the following reports on the top peer-tested stories in May.

These stories include ACG guidelines for the preferred treatment of adults with Clostridioides difficile, U.S. Preventive Services Task Force updated recommendations for colorectal cancer screening, coverage from Digestive Disease Week and more.

ACG publishes guidelines for preferred treatment of C. difficile infection

ACG developed guidelines for the preferred management of adults with Clostridioides difficile infection, published in the American Journal of Gastroenterology.

“These guidelines are timely — we referenced new literature up until the final revision — and very clinically oriented. [Infectious Disease Society of America and Society of Healthcare Epidemiologists of America] published their own guidelines a few years ago,” Colleen R. Kelly, MD, told Healio Gastroenterology. “We aligned our categories of severity with theirs — non-severe, severe and fulminant infection — and decided not to dive deeply into epidemiology and infection control practices, which they covered nicely. Instead, we aimed to develop an evidence-based, clinically useful guideline for the diagnosis, management, and prevention of C. difficile infection and chose to expand on areas of particular interest to gastroenterologists, including diagnostic issues around diarrhea and distinguishing C. difficile colonization from active infection, and the evaluation and management of CDI in the setting of inflammatory bowel disease.” READ MORE.

USPSTF issues updated recommendations for colorectal cancer screening

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force issued updated recommendations for colorectal cancer screening in JAMA.

“Colorectal cancer is a devastating disease and the third leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States, yet about a quarter of adults aged 50 to 75 have never been screened for colorectal cancer. The Task Force reviews its recommendations about every 5 years to make sure they reflect the latest research,” Martha Kubik, PhD, RN, professor and director of the School of Nursing in the College of Health and Human Services at George Mason University, U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) member, told Healio. “Screening for colorectal cancer is effective and saves lives. New science about colorectal cancer in people younger than 50 has enabled us to expand our recommendation to include people aged 45 to 49. Everyone who is 45 to 75 years old should be screened for colorectal cancer to reduce their risk of dying from this disease.” READ MORE.

Intake of sugar-sweetened beverages linked to early-onset colorectal cancer

Among women, a higher intake of sugar-sweetened beverages in adulthood and adolescence correlated with a higher risk for early-onset colorectal cancer, according to research published in Gut.

“Early-onset colorectal cancer (EO-CRC, age <50 years at diagnosis) is rapidly rising in the U.S., with an unclear understanding of its etiology and contributors to the rise. Sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs) exert adverse metabolic repercussions throughout the life course, including insulin resistance and inflammation. Higher SSB intake was also associated with obesity, which has been previously linked to risk of EO-CRC,” Yin Cao, MPH, ScD, division of public health sciences, department of surgery, Washington University School of Medicine, told Healio. “Thus, we expect SSB may be an emerging risk factor for EO-CRC and likely contribute to the rising incidence of EO-CRC.” READ MORE.

Link found between family history of colorectal polyps, risk for colorectal cancer

Family history of colorectal polyps linked to a higher risk for colorectal cancer in a Swedish cohort, according to research published in BMJ.

“In contrast with the established increased risk associated with a family history of CRC, it remains unclear whether those with a family history of colorectal polyps have an increased risk of CRC. As a result, available screening recommendations are discrepant for individuals with a family history of polyps,” Mingyang Song, MBBs, ScD, department of epidemiology and nutrition at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, and colleagues wrote. “Given the higher prevalence of polyps than CRC associated with the increasing uptake of endoscopic screening, a better understanding about the influence of family history of polyps on CRC risk is critical to improve current screening recommendations.” READ MORE.

Young IBD patients fail to develop neutralizing antibodies for SARS-CoV-2

Among young patients with inflammatory bowel disease, most who were positive for SARS-CoV-2, had a non-neutralizing antibody, according to data presented at Digestive Disease Week.

“Rapid decline in antibody levels following SARS-CoV-2 infection in our IBD patients treated with biologics suggests greater risk for reinfection, especially for variants that can escape the antibodies,” Joelynn Dailey, DO, from Connecticut Children's Medical Center, Hartford, said during her presentation. READ MORE.

Probiotics, reduction in upper respiratory tract infection symptoms

Daily probiotic use correlated with a reduction in upper respiratory tract infection symptoms among overweight individuals, according to a presentation Digestive Disease Week.

“There's been a growing body of evidence supporting the contribution of the gut-lung axis to find the relationship between the gut microbiome and respiratory immune responses,” Benjamin Mullish, MD, clinical lecturer in the division of digestive diseases, Imperial College London, England, said during a press conference prior to DDW. “Previous research in this area show probiotics may reduce upper respiratory tract infections (URTIs) in healthy adults and children; however, we have little data regarding vulnerable populations such as those who are older, overweight and people with obesity.” READ MORE.

Patients prefer FIT over blood test for CRC screening

When given a choice, participants preferred fecal immunochemical test-based screening for colorectal cancer compared with a blood test, according to research presented at Digestive Disease Week.

“Suboptimal participation is common in CRC screening programs; few studies have directly targeted non-participants to test strategies that might be effective in engaging them. Barriers include accessing health care systems, belief in the value of screening, exposure to trusted advocates, distaste for certain types of testing and the inconvenience of undertaking the screening system itself,” Graeme Young, MD, FRACP, Flinders Centre for Innovation in Cancer, Flinders University, said. “Our prior studies have demonstrated an overwhelming preference for a blood test over FIT for two-step screening. Thus, a blood test with screening might improve participation, especially in non-participants previously offered FIT.” READ MORE.


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