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Alexandre Ferreira distinguished with National Gastroenterology Award

The distinction Prémio Nacional de Gastrenterologia 2021 was awarded to Alexandre Ferreira, gastroenterologist at Hospital da Luz and Hospital Beatriz Ângelo (HBA), for his research work on the use of a particular technology in colonoscopy exams for detection of colon and rectum cancer. This is the most important distinction in the research area of gastroenterology, this year amounting to 10 thousand euros, promoted by the Portuguese Society of Gastroenterology.

Colon and rectum tumours are one of the main causes of death by cancer and the colonoscopy exam, done early in prevention screenings, makes it possible to reduce the incidence of cases and mortality. In the work now distinguished – entitled “Narrow Band Imaging (NBI) versus white light for the detection of sessile serrated colorectal lesions: a randomized clinical trial” –, Alexandre Ferreira investigated the benefit of the use of narrow band imaging (NBI) during colonoscopy, for the detection of premalignant lesions, namely serrated lesions.

“Previous studies on the use of narrow band imaging (NBI) in the detection of serrated lesions have shown promising, but heterogeneous results”, explains Alexandre Ferreira. His study covered 782 patients submitted to colonoscopy at HBA, in half of which the usual high-definition white light was applied, while NBI was applied to the other half. “There was not a significantly increased detection of lesions with this technology”, he concludes.

Established in 2013, the National Award of Gastroenterology has for purpose to distinguish unprecedented and outstanding scientific work in the field of gastroenterology, viewing to pursue the scientific objectives of the Portuguese Society of Gastroenterology. It was bestowed on only four occasions, two of them involving HBA and Hospital da Luz gastroenterologists: Joana Torres, in 2016, and now Alexandre Ferreira.

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