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Table 1 Summary of the Educational Content of the Decision Aid by Section.

From: A targeted decision aid for the elderly to decide whether to undergo colorectal cancer screening: development and results of an uncontrolled trial

Title of Section Summary of content
Introduction • American Cancer Society (ACS) recommends individualized decision making for older adults age 75 and over.
• This decision aid will help you think about whether colorectal cancer screening is the right choice for you.
Information about Colon Cancer Screening • Colorectal cancer screening tests look for colon cancer before you have symptoms.
Two Main Types of Tests that Screen for Colon Cancer • Colonoscopy is a procedure that requires preparation and occurs at the doctor's office.
• Stool cards can be done at home and returned to the doctor's office.
Those with cards positive for blood will need to have a colonoscopy.
Treatments People Undergo if Colon Cancer is Found • Most people with invasive colon cancer will need surgery.
• Some people may need chemotherapy after surgery.
Colon Cancer Screening Recommendations Are Different for Older Adults • As adults get older they are more likely to encounter numerous health problems that could affect their life expectancy.
• We are not sure whether screening is beneficial for those 75 years and older.
• That is why the ACS recommends older adults decide about colorectal cancer screening for themselves.
Why do Older Adults Need to Decide for Themselves about Colon Cancer Screening? • The chances of getting a serious illness go up with increased age. Older adults are also more likely to develop colon cancer.
Life expectancies for older adults vary with the number of serious health problems.
• In most cases colon cancer grows slowly. If someone develops colon cancer today he may not have any problems for 5-10 years.
• Colon cancer screening will not help all older people. A person's life expectancy can be influenced by their current health condition.
• Older adults must deal with competing causes of death. Other health problems may lead to death before colon cancer.
• There is uncertainty about who will benefit. No one can know how long any individual will live.
Magnitude of potential benefit from colon cancer screening • One life is extended for every 1000 people who are screened.
Risks to Consider in Making Your Decision about Colon Cancer Screening • Pictograph (Figure 1) compares the risk of dying from heart disease, stroke or colon cancer over 10 years.
• Pictograph (Figure 2) compares the risk of having a complication (bleeding, perforation or death) after the first 30 days of a colonoscopy.
Balancing the Benefits and Risks of Colonoscopy in People age 75 and Older • Figure 3 compares how a person's health can influence the balance between the benefits and risks of colon cancer screening.
  1. The table is divided into 2 columns. The first column lists the title of each section in the decision aid. The second column is a summary of the content in each section. Full content is available at