A stitch in time saves nine: Perceptions about colorectal cancer screening after a non-cancer colonoscopy result. Qualitative study

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OBJECTIVES: To explore perceptions of colorectal cancer (CRC) screening among participants who have experienced a 'false alarm' for CRC, and to explore perceptions about the relevance of screening for themselves or others.

METHODS: Semi-structured interviews with screening participants who had participated in the Danish CRC screening program and experienced a 'false alarm' for colorectal cancer. A thematic analysis was performed, based on an interpretive tradition of ethnography.

RESULTS: Perceptions about CRC screening after a non-cancer colonoscopy result were characterized by trust in the colonoscopy result showing no CRC, and satisfaction with the screening offer despite the risk for 'false alarm'. The patient-involving behavior of the healthcare professionals during the examination was for most participants a cornerstone for trusting the validity of the colonoscopy result showing no CRC. Strong notions about perceived obligation to participate in screening were common.

CONCLUSIONS: Prominent themes were trust in the result, satisfaction with the procedure, and moral obligations to participate both for themselves and for others.

PRACTICE IMPLICATIONS: Information to future invitees after a 'false alarm' experience could build on peoples' trust in the validity of a previous non-cancer result and should underscore the importance of subsequent screening even after a 'false alarm' for cancer.

TidsskriftPatient Education and Counseling
Sider (fra-til)1373-1379
Antal sider7
StatusUdgivet - jul. 2019

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