Colon Polyps - Treatments

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How are colon polyps treated?

Most polyps can be removed through the endoscope. They are then examined under the microscope. It is important to determine whether or not they contain cancer, if they are of a type that has malignant potential, and if they have characteristics that make them more likely to be associated with cancer, either in another polyp at the same time or in polyps that may form in the future (for example, are villous or serrated).

The results of the colonoscopy and histologic examination are important because they determine the need for increased frequency of screening colonoscopy in the future (for example, adenomatous polyps). If there is cancer already present in the polyp it is important to determine how deep into the polyp the cancer has spread. If it extends deeply, it is more likely that the cancer has spread deep into the wall of the colon or even to lymph nodes further away. If there is deep extension of the cancer, it may be necessary to do additional endoscopic resection of the area of colon where the polyp was or, to surgically remove the section of colon, in order to be certain that all of the cancer has been removed.

If a genetic mutation is suspected, it is looked for by genetic testing on a portion of the biopsy, and, if present, relatives should be screened for the same mutation. If present, the relatives should undergo more frequent screening colonoscopy.

It is recommended that patients with FAP and other polyp syndromes have their colon removed prophylactically to prevent the development of cancer.

Return to Colon Polyps

See what others are saying

Comment from: jeny, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: January 05

I am a 38 year old who has had about 4 colonoscopies. With each test I have had at least 4 polyps removed non-cancerous. My symptoms were gas bloating constipation since a child. I had blood in my stool went to see a gastro md. Then since been doing a repeat exam every 2 years. No family history seems to be I'm the only one so far. I believe I was about 30 yrs. Old at the first visit with a gastro md. Early diagnosis is the true key to prevent colon cancer. Now I'm wondering if my children 1 who is 20yrs and 1 who is 12 yrs. I do know maroon blood is from the higher part of the colon and causes allot of concern whereas red blood is from the lower colon and could be many things.

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Comment from: BenThere55, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: June 04

I am female senior citizen. Always been very active exercise all the time. Just had a Colonoscopy last week and they found an Adenoma 18cm. I hemorrhaged afterward and was in terrible pain for 24 hours. I have a family history of colon cancer. I am concerned as my Gastroenterologist after Pathology report said do Colonoscopy in year is going with that. I have read numerous reports that with this type of Polyp you need to have a Colonoscopy in 3-6 months as some times it is hard to remove all of it. My Physician is resisting this. I am going for second opinion. Very distressed about this. Have lost 3 aunts and my sister has had malignant Polyps.

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