The double contrast barium enema: a retrospective single centre audit of the detection of colorectal carcinomas.

Research paper by Daniel J A DJ Connolly, Zoë C ZC Traill, Helen S HS Reid, Susan J SJ Copley, Daniel J DJ Nolan

Indexed on: 19 Jan '02Published on: 19 Jan '02Published in: Clinical Radiology


To determine retrospectively the sensitivity and specificity of the double contrast barium enema (DCBE) as performed in one institution for the detection of colorectal carcinoma.Eight hundred and eighty barium enema reports were reviewed of consecutive adult patients who underwent DCBE and also had hospital case notes with a minimum follow up of two years, a later diagnostic colonoscopy, or operative and histological findings.Seventy-four true positive cases of colorectal carcinoma diagnosed at DCBE were confirmed at surgery and histological examination. There were four false positive diagnoses of carcinoma at DCBE. Eight false negative cases at DCBE were demonstrated within a two-year follow-up period. The sensitivity of the DCBE for detecting colorectal carcinoma was therefore 90.2% and the specificity was 99.5%.DCBE is a sensitive and highly specific investigation for the detection of colorectal carcinoma.