CT colonography: The next colon screening examination?

C. Daniel Johnson, Abraham H. Dachman

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

234 Scopus citations


Computed tomographic (CT) colonography is a new-generation technique for detecting colorectal neoplasms by using volumetric CT data combined with specialized imaging software. Patient examinations require full colonic preparation, insufflation, and data acquisition with the patient in the supine and prone positions. Current CT technology allows a single image of the colon to be acquired in as little as 20 seconds with a minimum of patient discomfort. Specialized computer software for interpretation usually combines transverse, multiplanar reformation, and three-dimensional endoluminal images for the optimal visualization of the colon and rectum. As of the time this article was written, CT colonography was competitive as a full structural colonic examination for the detection of polyps and cancer. To the authors' knowledge, no study results have yet been reported in a screening population. The unique capabilities of CT colonography include the display of the proximal colon that is inaccessible at colonoscopy because of obstructing colonic lesions or because of incomplete endoscopic examinations and the assessment of extracolonic abdominal and pelvic organs. This abdominopelvic survey potential provides radiologists with an opportunity to discover other potentially life-threatening, asymptomatic conditions. Further technologic developments and validation studies are in progress. CT colonography is an exciting and promising technique with an enormous potential for colorectal screening in the future.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)331-341
Number of pages11
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 2000


  • Colon, CT
  • Colon, abnormalities
  • Colon, diseases

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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