What Are Gallbladder Polyps?


Quick Answer

Gallbladder polyps are growths that bulge from the inner surface of the gallbladder wall, states Mayo Clinic. These growths can either be cancerous or noncancerous. The cancer status of these polyps can be determined by their size. The larger the size, the more they are likely to be cancerous.

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Full Answer

Gallbladder polyps whose diameters are larger than 10 millimeters are more likely to be cancerous than smaller polyps, says Mayo Clinic. Cancerous polyps are less common, and they constitute approximately 5 percent of the total polyps in the gall bladder, unlike the noncancerous ones that form 95 percent of the gallbladder polyps.

Some methods used to treat cancerous polyps include surgery to remove the gallbladder, notes Mayo Clinic. This surgery may also be necessary when gallstones accompany a gallbladder polyp irrespective of the size. However, no treatment may be necessary for small noncancerous gallbladder polyps.

Gallbladder polyps that change in size over time may imply cancer, explains Mayo Clinic. A person who is diagnosed with gallbladder polyps should therefore undergo regular medical check-ups to determine if the polyps change with time due to the presence of cancer. To check the cancer status of the polyps, the doctor can either use endoscopic ultrasound or standard abdominal ultrasound.

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