Determinants of adherence to screening by colonoscopy in individuals with a family history of colorectal cancer

Karen Bronner*, Ilse Mesters, Ahuva Weiss-Meilik, Ravit Geva, Guy Rozner, Hana Strul, Moshe Inbar, Zamir Halpern, Revital Kariv

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: Although first-degree relatives (FDRs) of colorectal cancer (CRC) patients, as a high-risk population, have the most to gain from colonoscopy screening, their adherence is suboptimal. Thus, an assessment of the determinants of adherence to screening is of potential importance. Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted among 318 FDRs of 164 CRC patients treated at Tel-Aviv Sourasky Medical Center. Interviews were conducted with a questionnaire using I-Change Model. Results: Adherence to interval colonoscopy was low with only 73 FDRs (23.0%). Greater adherence was associated with socio-demographic variables (older age, siblings, having spouse, higher level of education and income) and behavioral variables (healthier lifestyle, utilization of preventive health services).Family physicians and kin were identified as the most influential figures on uptake. Intention, affective barriers, positive attitudes, social support, cues to action, age, and health maintenance were the strongest determinants of participation in CRC screening. Conclusion: Adherence to colonoscopy is determined by multiple variables. Medical staff can play a key role in increasing adherence to colonoscopy. Practice implications: Future interventions should focus on fostering positive attitudes, overcoming barriers, enhancing social support and providing a medical recommendation. Special efforts should be invested in young FDRs, those of low socio-economic status and those who underutilize preventive medicine.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)272-281
Number of pages10
JournalPatient Education and Counseling
Issue number2
StatePublished - Nov 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Adherence
  • Colonoscopy screening
  • Colorectal cancer prevention
  • Determinants
  • First-degree-relatives


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