To reveal the present status and future directions of colorectal cancer in Asia.
The Working Group consisted of oncologists from six Asian countries (Japan, Korea, Hong Kong, China, Taiwan, Singapore and Philippines) discussed colorectal cancer in the 30th Asia-Pacific Cancer Conference and made a consensus report.
The incidence of colorectal cancer has been increasing rapidly in recent decades, and mortality has also increased except in Japan and Singapore. Colorectal screening with fecal occult blood tests is a national policy in Taiwan, Japan and Korea. Total colonoscopy is the most common examination for diagnosing colorectal cancers and neoplasms. However, there are differences in the macroscopic classification used. Laparoscopic surgery for colon cancer is extensively used, although the indication varies. Adequate lymph node harvesting of more than 12 nodes is performed in most countries. Neoadjuvant chemoradiation therapy is not routinely done for T2 or T3 rectal cancer. Total mesorectal excision is the standard surgery for rectal cancer. Survival rate data are unavailable for many countries and should be compiled in all. The differences in the health-care delivery systems affect the treatment choices for unresectable colorectal cancer. Infusional 5-FU plus leucovorin plus oxaliplatin (FOLFOX) is the most popular first-line regimen. Cetuximab is mainly used as a second- or third-line regimen with reference to k-ras mutation. Oxaliplatin-based adjuvant chemotherapy is commonly used for stage III disease, whereas the clinical practice for stage II disease varies.
Further clinical cooperation is needed to optimize the management of colorectal cancer in Asia.
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