Colorectal cancer (CRC) places a considerable burden on individuals and society in Europe, being the second most common cause of cancer-related death in the region. While earlier diagnosis and advances in treatment have considerably improved survival in recent years, further progress is needed. One of the greatest challenges associated with the treatment of CRC is the fact that current therapies for advanced disease are not curative, necessitating treatment for many years and placing a significant healthcare burden on society. To reduce the burden of CRC, care delivery must be more efficient and cost-effective. In particular, development of adequate screening programmes is needed, along with chemo-preventative strategies and newer, more active therapies. Further challenges include the lack of optimal selection of patients for adjuvant therapy, identification of the most appropriate target populations for current treatments and the optimum sequence for new molecular targeted agents. This article outlines current developments and unmet needs in CRC, and provides a detailed vision for improvements in the management of the disease. Implementation of some of these strategies will go some way to improving outcomes for patients with CRC. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
- Colorectal cancer