The 2020 postpolypectomy surveillance guideline update of European Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy defines a more restrictive group of individuals in need for surveillance 3 years after colonoscopy.
The aim of this cohort study was to validate the new guideline recommendation.
Based on a national quality assurance program, we compared the 2020 risk group definition with the previous 2013 recommendations for their strength of association with (1) colorectal cancer death, and (2) all-cause death.
A total of 265,608 screening colonoscopies were included in the study. Mean age was 61.1 years (SD ±9.0), and 50.6% were women. During a mean follow-up of 59.3 months (SD ±35.0), 170 CRC deaths and 7723 deaths of any cause were identified. 62.4% of colonoscopies were negative and 4.9% were assigned to surveillance after 3 years according to the 2020 guidelines versus 10.4% following the 2013 guidelines, which corresponds to a relative reduction in colonoscopies by 47%. The strength of association with CRC mortality was markedly higher with the 2020 surveillance group as compared to the 2013 guidelines (HR 2.56, 95% CI 1.62-4.03 vs. HR 1.73, 95% CI 1.13-2.62), while the magnitude of association with CRC mortality for low risk individuals was lower (HR 1.17, 95% CI 0.83-1.63 vs. 1.25, 95% CI 0.88-1.76).
Adherence to the updated guidelines reduces the burden of surveillance colonoscopies by 47% while preserving the efficacy of surveillance in preventing CRC mortality.

© 2021 The Authors. United European Gastroenterology Journal published by Wiley Periodicals LLC. on behalf of United European Gastroenterology.