Utilization of Colorectal Cancer Screening among Saudi Elderly Population: A Study from the Saudi National Survey for Elderly Health

Document Type: Methodological papers

Authors

1 Department of Public Health and Family Medicine, College of Medicine, Al Imam Mohammad ibn Saud Islamic University (IMSIU), Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

2 Department of Clinical Pharmacy, College of Pharmacy, King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

3 Department of Family and Community Medicine, College of Medicine, King Saud University, Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

4 Emergency Medicine, Security Forces Hospital, Health Ministers’ Council for the Gulf Cooperation Council States Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

5 College of Medicine, Al Imam Mohammad ibn Saud Islamic University (IMSIU), Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

6 Former Director General, Executive Board, Health Ministers’ Council for the Gulf Cooperation Council States Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Abstract

Objective: The goal of this study was to measure colorectal cancer screening (CRCS) utilization in Saudi Arabia ’s
elderly population and to assess the factors associated with CRCS. Methods: The Saudi National Survey for Elderly
Health was used to examine CRCS utilization. It is a nationally representative population-based cross-sectional survey
that was conducted between 2006-2007. Utilization of CRCS was defined as any colonoscopy during the last five years or
fecal occult blood test (FOBT) during the twelve months before the interview. Multivariable logistic regression was used
to assess patients’ demographics, co-morbidities, number of visits to primary health clinics, and hospital availability
and accessibility impact on CRCS. Results: The prevalence of CRCS utilization among Saudi elderly population was
5.64%. The fecal occult blood test was done in 4.4% of subjects while scope use was performed in 0.55%. In addition,
0.69% of patients have gone through both FOBT and scope use. Having blood in stools (OR=2.80; 95%CI: 1.3-6.00),
Self-drivers (OR= 2.52) private driver (OR=2.1; 95%CI: 1.15-3.7) having 4 or more visits to primary care centers 1.81
(95%CI: 1.14-2.86) were positively associated with CRCS utilization. On the other hand, being single was negatively
associated with CRCS utilization. Conclusion: In this nationally representative sample CRCS prevalence was very
low. According to our findings and in the context of the burden of colorectal cancer on the population, we recommend
developing national evidence-based policies and programs that take in consideration easiness of transportation and the
availability of primary care centers near to Saudi elderly population.

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