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March 30, 1963

Rectal Polyps and Cancer

Author Affiliations

New York City

JAMA. 1963;183(13):1116. doi:10.1001/jama.1963.03700130084020

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To the Editor:  —Your editorial entitled "Rectal Polyps and Cancer" (JAMA 181:720 [Aug 25] 1962) presents some interesting thinking on an important problem. We need additional data to evaluate the significance of these polyps, and you are right in advising that those who believe and those who doubt that such growths are potentially malignant share a responsibility for collecting such data.It occurs to me, however, that someone reading your editorial casually might draw some conclusions which you would not intend. You do include the suggestion that sigmoidoscopies should continue to be a part of the physical examination of adults. However, some physicians reading that "There is increasing evidence that they [adenomatous polyps of the colon and rectum] may have no more sinister significance than benign polyps of the nose..." may be tempted to discontinue performing such examinations. They may rationalize this on the basis of the fact that such

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