Polyps are usually benign growths that form in any organ of the body. Colon polyps — or colorectal polyps — form on the lining of the colon. They could be as tiny as sesame seeds or be as large as a golf ball. Most colon polyps are not malignant, but 10% may develop into cancerous cells over time.
What Are the Risk Factors?
Anyone can have colon polyps, but some are at a higher risk of getting them. Several risk factors can elevate your chance of getting diagnosed with colon polyps. These factors include any of the following:
Age — People older than 50 have a higher chance of developing colon polyps.
Family history — If a history of colon cancer or colon polyps runs in the family, you may have a chance of getting it. If many family members were diagnosed with it, the chance gets higher. However, it’s not a hereditary connection in some people.
Inflammatory intestinal conditions — Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, and other inflammatory conditions enhance your risk of developing colon polyps or even cancer.
Obesity, fat intake and lack of physical activities — Studies show these factors contribute heavily towards the increased risk of polyp development. A fiber-rich diet, weight control, and regular exercises can significantly reduce your risk.
Smoking and alcohol — Several studies assert the risk of colon polyps and colon cancer is greater in people addicted to alcohol (three or more drinks every day). The risk becomes significantly higher for smokers.
Racial and ethnic background — Black Americans have the highest incidence of colon polyps and colon cancer of any racial group in the United States.
What Is a Colonoscopy?
A colonoscopy is an exam to detect abnormalities or changes in the colon (large intestine) and rectum. During the examination, the physician inserts a long, flexible tube with a tiny video camera into the rectum to get a clear view of the inside cells in the entire colon.
This screening is also done to remove polyps if the surgeon thinks these growths are not cancerous. However, the removed polyps are always sent to labs for biopsy tests to determine whether they contain malignant or pre-malignant cells. A colonoscopy can also be done to collect tissue samples from polyps or other cells for biopsy.
These findings are highly critical from every arena. You will be getting the best expected result when the treatment is done perfectly. It will assure you with good results for the patient. A speedy recovery is always expected — in fact, the recovery rate gets a higher chance for the future.