Most polyps are benign or noncancerous, according to the American Cancer Society. However, some types of polyps can lead to colon cancer, depending on the type of polyp and certain risk factors.
The cause of colon polyps is unknown as of October 2014, according to Healthline and the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy. However, risks for developing colon polyps include having a family history of them, a history of ovarian or uterine cancer, having a high-fat and low-fiber diet a
Colonic polyps usually have no symptoms, explains Mayo Clinic. Patients may not know they have polyps until the doctor notices them during a bowel examination. However, some people may encounter symptoms such as rectal bleeding, change in bowel habits, pain, vomiting and nausea. Other possible sympt
Colon polyps are growths that develop along the inner lining of the large intestines and penetrate into the colon, according to MedicineNet. The size of the growths can vary.
Colonic polyps are generally removed during a colonoscopy or sigmoidoscopy, and then examined to see if they are a type that might develop into cancer, according to WebMD. If large polyps are found, surgery may be necessary.
Different types of colon polyps include adenomatous polyps, inflammatory polyps and hyperplastic polyps, notes WebMD. While a majority of colorectal polyps don't develop into cancer, nearly all rectal and colon cancers begin from these polyps. There's also a chance a person may inherit diseases that
Both flat and protruding polyps can develop into cancer, according to colon cancer expert Suzanne Dixon for About.com. The flat polyps, also called sessile polyps, rest on the mucus membrane inside the colon. Unlike the protruding, or pedunculated, polyps that look like mushrooms, flat polyps do not
Often, people with colon polyps cannot feel them at all, but they can cause pain and nausea, according to Mayo Clinic. They can also indirectly cause feelings of tiredness and shortness of breath by causing iron deficiency anemia. Other possible symptoms include bloody stools, constipation or diarrh
Most polyps are found and removed during sigmoidoscopy or colonoscopy screening, using biopsy forceps or a wire loop called a snare. If the polyp is larger than 0.75 inches, a liquid may be injected under it to help with its removal, explains Mayo Clinic.
The only definitive way to determine whether a polyp is cancerous is through a biopsy, according to the National Cancer Institute. Doctors remove polyps that they find during the course of a colonoscopy and biopsy them to see if cancerous tissue is present.