Sensitivity of double-contrast barium study for left-colon polyps

D. K. Rex, G. A. Lehman, J. C. Lappas, R. E. Miller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


A blinded, prospective study was conducted to determine the sensitivity of double-contrast barium enema examination (DCBE) in detecting left-colon polyps. Metal clips were endoscopically placed on normal mucosa either adjacent to polyps (in 65 study subjects with 92 polyps) or not adjacent to polyps (in 50 control subjects). DCBE had a high sensitivity for detection of polyps ≥ 1 cm and 6-9 mm in size (100% and 83% detection, respectively) but was insensitive in detecting polyps in the 4 to 5-mm and 2 to 3-mm size ranges (56% and 22% detection, respectively). The factors contributing most commonly to false-negative interpretations were the presence of air bubbles, overlap of bowel loops, and luminal fecal debris. No error in radiographic technique was evident for false-negative interpretations in 14 (41%) of 34 polyps that were not detected by DCBE.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)69-72
Number of pages4
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 1986

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging

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