Knowledge and utilization of colorectal cancer screening in Saudi society

Sharifah Othman, Faten Alaqeel, Eiman AlShammari, Rana Fallatah


In Saudi Arabia (SA), cancer is a major burden on the healthcare system. It has a great impact on both the social and economic aspects of the patient. The Saudi cancer registry reports an increase in the incidence of all cancers since the first report in 1994. Colorectal Cancer (CRC) is the most common type of cancer in SA.

To measure the utilization and the knowledge of Saudi population about screening for CRC and the awareness of the society towards CRC incidence and risk factors.

A questionnaire-based cross-sectional survey was conducted with simple random sampling of 636 individuals between February 2018 to May 2018. The questionnaire comprised of 19 questions covering personal data of the participant, degree of awareness about colorectal cancer in Saudi Arabia, and information about colonoscopy and how it’s done.

The known risk factors for CRC, that are inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), smoking and polyps, were recognized by less than 50 per cent of the respondents. Almost two thirds of the respondents were willing to do screening. Willingness to do screening was significantly associated with a history of colonoscopy for the respondent or a relative.

The knowledge and awareness of our sample about CRC was low. Raising the level of knowledge is anticipated to increase the readiness to do screening.
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