Rectal polyps are abnormal outgrowths that arise from the rectum (where the large intestine ends). Polyps are one of the most common conditions of the rectum and are seen in 15 to 20% of the population. Rectal polyps are usually benign. A small percentage of the rectal polyps turn cancerous if left untreated over a period of 8 to 10 years. Polyps are diagnosed by digital examination or sigmoidoscopy. A small-sized polyp can be removed during a colonoscopy. Larger polyps require surgical intervention.
Rectal polyps are small, fleshy outgrowths on the rectum (the last part of your large intestine). These polyps are usually sessile (flat) or pedunculated, looking like a stalk of broccoli. Rectal polyps can be of various types.
Rectal polyps do not usually turn cancerous. If left untreated for a long time, they may turn cancerous. The size of the polyp also determines its future.
Polyps develop due to genetic changes in the cells lining the colon. Normal cells have a definite pattern of dividing and growing. In cases of genetic mutations, the cells grow and divide irregularly and haphazardly. These excess cells accumulate and grow into a polyp.
About 30 to 40% of adults in the 45 to 50 age group suffer from polyps. Men, women, and children are equally predisposed to rectal polyps. Several factors predispose you to colorectal polyps and cancer. These factors include-
Most rectal polyps do not cause any symptoms. This is why doctors recommend regular screening for colorectal cancers, especially if you have a family history and a personal history of large intestine diseases.
Very rarely, rectal polyps may produce the following symptoms-
Most rectal polyps are diagnosed by digital examination. Your doctor may recommend further tests to confirm the diagnosis.
Treatment for rectal polyps involves their removal. People who have undergone polyp removal should undergo tests periodically to check for the development of new polyps.
Laparoscopic Removal of Polyp
Depending on the placement of the polyp, there are different surgical techniques for the removal:
Transanal Minimally Invasive Surgery (TAMIS)
Rectal polyps do not generally cause any symptoms. However, if left untreated for a long time, they may lead to the development of complications.
Rectal polyps affect a significant amount of the population the world over. They can happen to anyone aged 45 years and above. People with intestinal diseases like inflammatory bowel disease and ulcerative colitis have a higher chance of developing polyps. If a family member suffers from this condition, there is a high chance of you developing rectal polyps and colorectal cancer.
While your age, family history, and personal health conditions are not in your control, there are several factors that you can work on to prevent the development of rectal polyps.
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Home remedies have no role in the treatment of rectal polyps. They have to be removed colonoscopically or by surgery. You can prevent the polyps from returning by maintaining a healthy weight, exercising regularly, avoiding smoking and drinking, and eating fresh fruits and veggies.
Rectal polyps are a flesh mass of overgrown cells. They are well rooted into the mucosal lining of your rectum. They do not usually fall off on their own. Your surgeon will use a colonoscope to check for polyps in the rectum and remove the ones he comes across. Larger polyps may require surgical intervention.
When left untreated for a very long time, polyps have the ability to turn cancerous. They then spread to the nearby tissues. They can pass into the bloodstream and lymph and spread to distant tissues and organs.
Rectal polyps are very common in adults over 45 to 50 years of age. Being obese, leading an unhealthy lifestyle, smoking, drinking, and eating a lot of red meat and processed foods makes you prone to develop polyps. If you suffer from any intestinal disease or have a family member who suffers from polyps, you also have a higher chance of developing them.
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