Screening for Colorectal Cancer

From the USPSTF and the JAMA Network. Learn more.

In 2016, the United States Preventive Services Task Force updated its recommendations for screening for colorectal cancer. The Task Force (link to recommendation here) recommends the following:

  • Screen for colorectal cancer starting at age 50 and continuing until age 75 years (A recommendation)
  • Adults aged 76 to 85 can make individualized decisions about screening based on their screening history and health (C recommendation); never-screened and healthier adults are more likely to benefit.
  • Adults older than age 85 can forego screening because other causes of death preclude a benefit from detecting cancer through screening.

Patients and physician can choose among available screening tests because there is no information demonstrating that any one is better than another; the best test is the one most likely to lead to patient adherence to screening over time.

Related Multimedia

JAMA Whiteboard: Screening for Colorectal Cancer

The JAMA Report: Screening for Colorectal Cancer

Read more about colorectal cancer from the JAMA Network