Objectives: Colorectal flat adenomas have been associated with a higher risk of colorectal malignancy. We describe demographic characteristics and endoscopic findings in patients with colorectal flat adenomas.
Methods: In total, 1934 consecutive patients undergoing colonoscopy were prospectively included. Polyp shape was classified according to the Japanese classification. Chromoendoscopy was applied whenever a flat lesion was suspected. Indications for colonoscopy, demographic data, and characteristics of neoplastic lesions were recorded. Patients were classified as follows: group 1, no adenomas (n=1250); group 2, only protruding adenomas (n=427); group 3, protruding and flat adenomas (n=118); and group 4, only flat adenomas (n=139).
Results: Approximately one in every 10 patients (13.2%) had flat adenomas. Among them, concomitant protruding adenomas were identified in approximately half of the cases. In multivariate analysis, age older than 50 years [odds ratio (OR)=1.62; 95% confidence interval (CI)=1.08–2.43, P=0.02], protruding adenomas (OR=2.17; 95% CI=1.65–2.87, P<0.001), follow-up colonoscopy for polyps or cancer (OR=2.22; 95% CI=1.59–3.10, P<0.001), screening colonoscopy (OR=1.60, 95% CI=1.15–2.22, P=0.005), and specifically trained endoscopist (OR=2.02, 95% CI=1.53–2.68, P<0.001) were associated independently with flat adenoma detection.
Conclusion: Flat adenomas have specific demographic factors that might help to improve detection. Particularly, age older than 50 years, colorectal neoplasia surveillance, and the presence of protruding adenomas should alert endoscopists to the possible presence of these lesions. Trained endoscopists may offer a greater chance of detecting these lesions.