JOURNAL ARTICLE
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Colon adenoma features and their impact on risk of future advanced adenomas and colorectal cancer.

AIM: To review the evidence on the association between specific colon adenoma features and the risk of future colonic neoplasia [adenomas and colorectal cancer (CRC)].

METHODS: We performed a literature search using the National Library of Medicine through PubMed from 1/1/2003 to 5/30/2015. Specific Medical Subject Headings terms (colon, colon polyps, adenomatous polyps, epidemiology, natural history, growth, cancer screening, colonoscopy, CRC) were used in conjunction with subject headings/key words (surveillance, adenoma surveillance, polypectomy surveillance, and serrated adenoma). We defined non-advanced adenomas as 1-2 adenomas each < 10 mm in size and advanced adenomas as any adenoma ≥ 10 mm size or with > 25% villous histology or high-grade dysplasia. A combined endpoint of advanced neoplasia included advanced adenomas and invasive CRC.

RESULTS: Our search strategy identified 592 candidate articles of which 8 met inclusion criteria and were relevant for assessment of histology (low grade vs high grade dysplasia, villous features) and adenoma size. Six of these studies met the accepted quality indicator threshold for overall adenoma detection rate > 25% among study patients. We found 254 articles of which 7 met inclusion criteria for the evaluation of multiple adenomas. Lastly, our search revealed 222 candidate articles of which 6 met inclusion criteria for evaluation of serrated polyps. Our review found that villous features, high grade dysplasia, larger adenoma size, and having ≥ 3 adenomas at baseline are associated with an increased risk of future colonic neoplasia in some but not all studies. Serrated polyps in the proximal colon are associated with an increased risk of future colonic neoplasia, comparable to having a baseline advanced adenoma.

CONCLUSION: Data on adenoma features and risk of future adenomas and CRC are compelling yet modest in absolute effect size. Future research should refine this risk stratification.

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