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Nurse led flexible sigmoidoscopy in primary care - the first thousand patients

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Karthik MaruthaChalam, Alan Horgan


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Objectives Secondary care Trusts have traditionally been providers of flexible sigmoidoscopy services in the United Kingdom. The aim of this study was to establish a Nurse-led flexible sigmoidoscopy clinic that would provide a patient orientated service in a primary care setting. Patients and methods A protocol driven flexible sigmoidoscopy clinic was established in a primary care setting. The first thousand patients who underwent flexible sigmoidoscopy at the community clinic were prospectively studied. Results A nurse endoscopist performed 1002 procedures on 1000 patients. Median time from referral to flexible sigmoidoscopy was 35 days (Range 1-180 days). Two hundred and twenty-two (22%) patients were diagnosed with significant colonic pathology including 25 (2.5%) patients with colorectal cancer. Median time from referral to histological diagnosis of colorectal cancer was 26 days (range 7-87 days). No complications were encountered. Patients who required further follow-up were referred to a Consultant led (29%) or Nurse led clinic (5%) in secondary care. Patient satisfaction as assessed by postal questionnaire indicated that 447 (99%) patients were satisfied with the service. Conclusions A community endoscopy clinic can provide a safe and effective flexible sigmoidoscopy service with high levels of patient satisfaction. Nurse Endoscopists can extend their role in primary care with adequate training and support from secondary care hospitals.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Maruthachalam K, Stoker E, Nicholson G, Horgan AF

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Colorectal Disease

Year: 2006

Volume: 8

Issue: 7

Pages: 557-562

ISSN (print): 1462-8910

ISSN (electronic): 1463-1318

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell


DOI: 10.1111/j.1463-1318.2006.00973.x


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