ESCP's Cohort Studies and Audits Sub-Committee gives an update on the society's snapshot studies which form the largest study of this type ever undertaken in the field of colorectal surgery. 

Dear ESCP members

The ESCP 2015 audit was published this week in Colorectal Disease and fully indexed on Pubmed under the single name of our collaborative authorship group. This means that the input and involvement of all 1105 co-authors across our network has been recognised and documented. The direct link to the paper is:

Together, we have created the largest study of this type ever undertaken in the field of colorectal surgery and should be duly proud. We have learnt a great deal about how to run and analyse these large-scale snapshot audits. The parallel papers from the 2015 audit describing secondary analyses on: the technical details of stapled anastomoses, and the cancer and Crohn’s subsets will be appearing in the coming weeks. Papers from the 2016 audit (stoma closure) are also in the late stages of preparation and will be appearing in due course. It has been an exciting journey bringing these projects to fruition.

Progress of the model

Since the first audit in 2015, there has been a year-on-year increased in participation in terms of sites and investigators:

StudyInvestigatorsSitesCountriesPatients entered
2015 - Right hemicolectomy/I-C resections 1105 284 39 3208
2016 - Closure of intestinal stomas 1214 305 48 2441
2017 - Left colon/sigmoid/rectal resections 1441* 353* 51* 921*

* the 2017 audit is ongoing, and still open to new sites so these numbers will all increase

Please note that the 2017 is still in progress and it is not too late to join. Sites must register and commence their 8 week data collection period by March 15th 2017 – please contact us urgently if you would like to participate by registering at ESCP 2017 Snapshot Audit Team Registration If you have problems accessing this webpage, or any questions please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

The future of the ESCP cohort studies and audits programme

It has been exciting to observe the way that involvement in the snapshot studies has bought together the ESCP group as a collective force for evaluating our patient care. This has been recognised at all levels of the society. There is an ongoing appetite for participating in such studies, as well as a parallel desire to evolve the network further and undertake more complex projects. There are three areas we hope to progress in parallel over the coming 12 months:

  1. Continue to undertake wide-reaching snapshot audits of commonly-occurring operations across any site undertaking colorectal surgery. These may in the future involve other parallel partner organisations across Europe, and even could include non-colorectal colleagues such as hernia surgeons or gastroenterologists.
  2. Run more focussed sub-studies in discrete subsets of patients undergoing an operation a particular way (such as robotically or via a trans-anal approach) in a smaller group of units that may be identified on the back of one of the major audits. These studies might collect different and more detailed information on techniques and longitudinal outcome assessments.
  3. Undertake a longitudinal cohort study with patient-level consent and individualised reporting of outcomes after surgery, run across hundreds of site and co-ordinated via a central hub or hubs.

Your involvement

These ambitious plans will require a significant expansion of our sub-committee and study delivery team. We also plan to establish a more efficient study management system which will be necessary to allow us to move from running projects sequentially to having multiple parallel projects running simultaneously.

As such, we invite any ESCP members who would like to join our sub-committee to come forward – details can be found here:

There are around 20 ‘young ESCP’ members who have already expressed an interest in being involved – we will be contacting you shortly about this.

Finally, thank-you all once again for your help and support with this ground-breaking venture

Yours faithfully

The ESCP cohort studies and audits sub-committee:

Mr Thomas Pinkney (chairperson), Dr Alaa El-Hussuna (lead for 2017 audit), Professor Oded Zmora (lead for 2016 audit), Dr Matteo Frasson, Mr Nick Battersby, Mr Aneel Bhangu, Mr Sanjay Chaudri, Dr Dmitri Nepogodiev, Mr Baljit Singh.

Mr Daniel Mekic, ESCP Research Manager
Dr Rita Perry, ESCP Data Manager