Colorectal Polyps in Thibodaux, LA

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Colorectal polyps, sometimes referred to as colon polyps, are a frequent occurrence among the adult population. The word “colorectal” refers to the colon and the rectum. Several health conditions that affect the colon often include the rectum, which is the reason they are usually spoken of together. A colorectal polyp is a polyp that occurs in either the rectum or the colon. A colon polyp is a mass comprised of a group of cells on the lining of your rectum or colon.

Polyps, alone, are not usually cause for concern and typically do not present symptoms; however, colon and rectal polyps need to be treated because they can, after a time, turn cancerous. To identify colon polyps, the gastroenterologists at a Digestive Health Center near you commonly perform colonoscopy services. Please reach out to one of our locations to schedule a colonoscopy in Thibodaux, LA.

Colon polyps present when cells experience more division or growth than what is normal. Healthcare providers are still not sure what causes this, but there are correlations and risk factors that are common among individuals who have colorectal polyps.

Some of the risk factors for rectal polyps are:

  • Having a family or personal history of colon or rectal polyps
  • Crohn's disease
  • High consumption of alcohol
  • “Typical Western diet” (high fat, low fiber)
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Ulcerative colitis
  • Tobacco use
  • Being overweight
  • Being over the age of 45
  • Genetic predisposition

Inherited genetic conditions can increase your chance of having colon polyps. Such conditions could include:

  • Serrated polyposis syndrome
  • Familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP)
  • Peutz-Jeghers syndrome
  • Gardner’s syndrome
  • Lynch syndrome
  • MYH-associated polyposis (MAP)

A number of cases of colon or rectal polyps do present with symptoms. The most common symptoms of colorectal polyps can include:

  • Blood in the stool
  • Constipation
  • Weakness
  • Pain in the abdominal area
  • Iron deficiency anemia
  • Shortness of breath
  • Diarrhea (lasting for more than one week)
  • Fatigue

If you experience any of the above symptoms, are 45 years of age or above, have a family history of colon cancer or colorectal polyps, and are in the Thibodaux, LA area, please get in touch with us to learn more about screening for colon cancer.

It is not unusual to find polyps in conjunction with a colonoscopy, and many times, polyps are benign (not cancerous). Polyps discovered while undergoing a colonoscopy will frequently be removed during your colonoscopy and assessed for signs of cancer. If your colon or rectal polyps are determined to be benign, then your provider may recommend routine screenings for colon cancer moving forward. If your polyp is diagnosed as malignant (cancerous), you and your Digestive Health Center provider will create a specialized treatment plan.

The best way to address colorectal polyps is by removing them. During the course of a colonoscopy, polyps in your colon and rectum can be removed in conjunction with a procedure called a polypectomy. In extreme cases, some or the entirety of your colon or rectum may need to be removed.

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Are colorectal polyps an inherited condition?

Possessing a familial history of colon polyps can increase your risk of this health concern. Certain variations of polyps may carry a genetic correlation and occur among relatives. Consult your GI provider regarding your health and family history with colorectal polyps to evaluate your own risk and the need for colon cancer screenings.

Will colon polyps return after removal?

It is rare for a colorectal polyp to redevelop once it is completely removed. However, some patients might develop new polyps in other parts of the rectum or colon. For this reason, it is essential to have regular screenings for colon cancer as advised by your physician.

Can colon polyps be prevented?

It might not be possible to prevent colorectal polyps from developing, particularly if you carry a greater risk due to genetics. However, maintaining a healthy lifestyle may help decrease the risk of these polyps. This includes following a healthy diet, avoiding the use of tobacco, drinking alcohol in moderation, and getting enough exercise. Scheduling routine colonoscopy exams upon turning age 45 can also help reduce your risk.

How long is the recovery period following a colorectal polyp removal?

Generally, most patients need around seven days to recuperate following polyp removal during a colonoscopy exam. The Digestive Health Center staff will provide aftercare instructions on what you can expect during recovery and when you can resume your normal activities.

Colon polyps can be identified, removed, and tested for cancer at a routine colonoscopy procedure. As a physician-led group of gastroenterologists, Digestive Health Center strives to deliver a patient-centric experience. To discover more about colon and rectal polyps and how they might be located and removed, we recommend that you contact one of our locations in Thibodaux, LA today to request a consultation.

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