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We analyzed the results of a long-term follow-up surveillance of patients with colorectal polyps after endoscopic polypectomy in terms of the cumulative incidence of subsequent colorectal cancer and the clinicopathologic characteristics of carcinomas detected by colonoscopy.The study cohort consisted of 6,715 patients who had received endoscopic resection of single or multiple colorectal polyps and then underwent periodic colonoscopy (or a combination of sigmoidoscopy and barium x-ray examination in some cases) during an average follow-up of six years (40,622 person-years in total).During the follow-up, 31 cases of colorectal cancer containing 15 submucosal invasive carcinomas (T1,N0,M0) and 16 advanced carcinomas were detected. The cumulative incidence of colorectal cancer was analyzed for four subgroups of the 6,715 patients classified according to the diameter, grade of dysplasia, and histologic features of polyps. Furthermore, the depth of invasion, macroscopic configuration of submucosal invasive cancer, and site of colorectal cancer observed in the 31 cases were compared with those of a reference group of 1,497 patients with colorectal cancer treated at Takano Hospital during the same period. Submucosal invasive cancer was the most common type among the colorectal carcinomas detected during follow-up. In terms of macroscopic configuration of submucosal cancer, the superficial type was significantly more common than the protruded type. The superficial submucosal cancer showed a significantly longer interval to detection than the protruded submucosal cancer. By site of lesion, proximal colon cancer was significantly more common.Follow-up colonoscopy appears to be useful in patients with larger polyps (>5 mm). Patients with severe dysplasia and those with malignant polyps should be followed-up carefully. Because submucosal cancer detected by follow-up examination after polypectomy showed higher rates of superficial-type cancer and proximal colon cancer, careful endoscopic examination of the entire colon is important.