Adverse events related to colonoscopy: Global trends and future challenges

Su Young Kim, Hyun Soo Kim, Hong Jun Park

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

91 Citations (Scopus)


Colonoscopy is a widely used method for diagnosing and treating colonic disease. The number of colonoscopies is increasing worldwide, and concerns about associated adverse events are growing. Large-scale studies using big data for post-colonoscopy complications have been reported. A colon perforation is a severe complication with a relatively high mortality rate. The perforation rate, as reported in large studies (≥ 50,000 colonoscopies) published since 2000, ranges from 0.005-0.085%. The trend in the overall perforation rate in the past 15 years has not changed significantly. Bleeding is a more common adverse event than perforation. Recent large studies (≥ 50,000 colonoscopies) have reported postcolonoscopy bleeding occurring in 0.001-0.687% of cases. Most studies about adverse events related to colonoscopy were performed in the West, and relatively few studies have been conducted in the East. The incidence of post-colonoscopy complications increases in elderly patients or patients with inflammatory bowel diseases. It is important to use a unified definition and refined data to overcome the limitations of previous studies. In addition, a structured training program for endoscopists and a systematic national management program are needed to reduce post-colonoscopy complications. In this review, we discuss the current trends in colonoscopy related to adverse events, as well as the challenges to be addressed through future research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)190-204
Number of pages15
JournalWorld Journal of Gastroenterology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Jan 14

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2019. Published by Baishideng Publishing Group Inc. All rights reserved.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Gastroenterology


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