As you can see by the reproduction of the montage below, AFP's cover takes a different twist this issue: a collection of 16 color images seen through a flexible sigmoidoscope. Intermingled are views of normal rectal folds, mucosal vasculature and haustra, and views of pathologic conditions such as internal hemorrhoids, a large diverticulum, Crohn's disease, polyps and adenocarcinoma. What else could more clearly illustrate the procedure than these images, which reappear in this issue's cover article?
Starting on page 313, the article “Flexible Sigmoidoscopy: Screening for Colorectal Cancer,” by Brett Andrew Johnson, M.D., Hamot Family Practice Residency Program, Erie, Pa., offers a practical review of the techniques used in this procedure and the pathologic conditions that may be encountered. A related editorial by Wm. MacMillan Rodney, M.D., a well-known authority in procedural skills, appears on page 270.
Although most of AFP's covers showcase illustrations rendered by highly trained medical artists, some subjects lend themselves best to photographs (for example—neoplastic skin lesions, September 15, 1998). Although many readers spare their coffee tables from issues with clinical images on the cover, these photographs serve to illustrate an important point: the success of healing depends on the early and accurate identification of disease.