Drs. Pickhardt, Kim and Pooler receive international recognition for work on virtual colonoscopy

Posted on May 2013

Drs. Perry Pickhardt, and David Kim, along with UW Radiology trainee Dr. B. Dustin Pooler have recently been recognized by the journal European Radiology and the European Society of Gastrointestinal and Abdominal Radiology (ESGAR) for their paper “Five year colorectal cancer outcomes in a large negative CT colonography screening cohort.” Dr. Pickhardt will be presented with an award during the annual ESGAR meeting in June in Barcelona, Spain.

The article was chosen from among 36 different GI papers published in European Radiology by ESGAR members during 2012. ESGAR commended the authors for an “outstanding effort… which is a great contribution to the scientific aims of ESGAR.”

The paper focuses on virtual colonoscopy (CT colonography) as a useful technique for detecting polyps and preventing colorectal cancer. President Obama made headlines when he underwent a virtual colonoscopy in 2010, and many critics voiced the opinion that virtual screening can miss smaller polyps.

In their research, Dr. Pickhardt and his colleagues evaluated 5-year outcomes in patients with negative screening virtual colonoscopy, showing that it is safe to ignore diminutive polyps—tiny lesions 5 mm or less in size. “We’re the only place in the world that has 5-year follow up data for CTC screening,” Pickhardt said, “and our findings show that a negative CTC screening exam is as good as or better than a negative colonoscopy.”

Dr. Pickhardt points out that work by UW radiologists is recognized internationally. “The Abdominal Imaging section is one of the best in the country and throughout the world based on clinical research and impact on practice.”