Colon (Colonic) Polyps
Colon (Colonic) Polyps - raised or flat growths on the surface of the colon (large intestine).
Some colon polyps are benign (not cancer), but some colon polyps may already be cancerous or become cancer in the future.
Flat polyps can be smaller and more likely to be cancer than raised polyps. Polyps can usually be removed during a colonoscopy.
Colon (Colonic) Polyps Symptoms
Most people with colon polyps do not have symptoms and don't know they have it until the doctor finds. When symptoms do show up, they
- Anal bleeding, red and bloody stools, bloodied underwear or the toilet paper
- Constipation or diarrhea that lasts more than a week
- Black stool or poop with red streaks
Colon (Colonic) Polyps Cause
- People 50+ years old
- History of polyps
- Family history of colon cancer or polyps
- Unhealthy and fatty diet
- Smoking or heavy alcohol use
- Being out of shape and overweight
Colon (Colonic) Polyps Treatment
Doctor can perform one or more tests to check for colon polyps:
- Barium enema - a liquid called barium (makes intestines look white in pictures) put into the rectum
before taking x-rays of the large intestine. This makes the polyps easy to see since they are dark.
- Sigmoidoscopy - a thin, flexible tube (sigmoidoscope) with light on it is put into the rectum, allowing the doctor to check for polyps
- Colonoscopy - the doctor looks at the entire large intestine with a long, flexible tube with a camera showing
images of the colon and the polyps if they exist. The tube has a tool that can remove polyps which is usually done during colonoscopy
- Computerized tomography (CT) scan - a thin, flexible tube goes into the rectum, producing digital images of the rectum
- Stool sample test - test where the stool is tested in the laboratory for signs of cancer
- Other Cancer tests
To prevent colon (colonic) polyps, stick to a healthier diet low in fats and heavy meats, don't smoke, drink too much alcohol and maintain a
healthy body weight. Eating more calcium may also lower your risk of getting polyps. Some foods that are rich in calcium are
milk, cheese, yogurt, and broccoli. Taking a low dose of aspirin every day might help prevent polyps.