GP colon Ca care
GP follow-up of patients with colon cancer is just as good as by surgeons, the results of a randomised controlled trial show.
Rates of recurrence and deaths were comparable in the two groups as were patient satisfaction, quality of life, and anxiety and depression.
The researchers, from the UK and Australia, said there was 'widespread interest' in shifting follow-up duties from second-ary to primary care, with potential cost savings and evidence of 'equal or improved outcomes'.
Study leader Professor David Weller, head of general practice in the division of community health sciences at the University of Edinburgh, said: 'Primary care has a growing role in cancer management.
'This study challenges follow-up practices for colon cancer, which have traditionally been led by secondary care.'
The research, published online by the British Journal of Cancer, randomised 203 patients who had had potentially curative treatment for colon cancer to follow-up from a GP or
surgeon every three months, with annual faecal occult blood tests.