Colorectal Polyps in Indianapolis, IN
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What are colon polyps?
Colorectal polyps, which may also be called colon polyps, commonly form in adults. The term "colorectal" refers to the colon as well as the rectum. Several health disorders that include the colon more often than not also affect the rectum, which is the reason they are sometimes talked about together. A colon polyp is a polyp (a mass of cells) that exists in either the colon or the rectum.
Polyps on their own are usually harmless and commonly don't result in symptoms; however, colon and rectal polyps need to be addressed since they can, after a time, present as cancerous. To confirm a suspicion of colorectal polyps, the gastrointestinal specialists at Indianapolis Gastroenterology and Hepatology commonly carry out colonoscopy services. Please call our practice to arrange for a colonoscopy in Indianapolis, IN.
What causes colorectal polyps?
Colon polyps develop when cells divide or grow at an abnormal rate. The medical community is still not certain as to why this happens, but there are connections and risk factors that are common among those who live with colon polyps.
Common risk factors for colorectal polyps include:
- Type 2 diabetes
- "Typical Western diet" (high-fat, low-fiber)
- Genetic history
- Being over the age of 45
- Having a family or personal history of colorectal polyps
- Crohn's disease
- Tobacco use
- Heavy alcohol consumption
- Ulcerative colitis
Hereditary genetic conditions can elevate the risk of experiencing colon polyps. Such conditions may include:
- Familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP)
- MYH-associated polyposis (MAP)
- Serrated polyposis syndrome
- Lynch syndrome
- Peutz-Jeghers syndrome
- Gardner's syndrome
What are common symptoms of colon and rectal polyps?
Colorectal polyps usually don't trigger symptoms in people who have them. If you are experiencing any symptoms, some of the most prevalent indications of colon polyps include:
- Shortness of breath
- Iron deficiency anemia
- Pain in the abdominal area
- Diarrhea (lasting in excess of seven days)
- Bloody stool
If you are experiencing any of the above symptoms, are age 45 or above, or have a family history of colorectal polyps or colon cancer and are in the Indianapolis, IN area, reach out to our staff to learn more about screening for colon cancer.
What if a doctor detects polyps during a colonoscopy?
It's not unusual to detect polyps during a colonoscopy, but they are usually not cancerous (benign). Polyps identified through a colonoscopy will usually be removed during the course of your colonoscopy (polypectomy) and tested for cancer. In the event that your colorectal polyps are determined to be non-malignant, then your physician will likely request regular screenings for colorectal cancer moving forward. If any polyp is found to be malignant (cancerous), you and your Indianapolis Gastroenterology and Hepatology physician will discuss the appropriate next steps.
The typical way to address colon polyps is by excising them. During the course of a colonoscopy (or flexible sigmoidoscopy), polyps in the colon and rectum can be excised as a part of a procedure referred to as a polypectomy. In extreme situations, a part of or all of your rectum or colon may need to be removed.
What can I do to help prevent colorectal cancer?
Colorectal cancer has a 90% survival rate if it's detected and treated early. Despite this fact, it is still the second leading cause of cancer deaths in men and women combined in the U.S.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one-third of American adults skip routine colon cancer screenings. If you are over the age of 45, have a history of colorectal cancer in your family, or meet any of the other risk factors outlined above, we strongly recommend that you speak to a gastrointestinal physician in Indianapolis, IN about scheduling a colonoscopy to assess for signs of cancer and have any abnormal growths removed. The colonoscopy has long been considered the gold standard of colorectal cancer tests, as it is the only procedure that allows your doctor to check for colorectal polyps and remove them at the same time. The providers at Indianapolis Gastroenterology and Hepatology frequently perform routine colonoscopies and will be happy to work with you to safeguard your digestive health.
Get treatment for colon or rectal polyps
Colorectal polyps can be spotted, excised, and evaluated for signs of cancer during a routine colonoscopy procedure. The gastrointestinal providers at Indianapolis Gastroenterology and Hepatology serve the community by providing a patient-focused experience. To find out more about screening for colorectal polyps in Indianapolis, IN, please contact our GI practice today.
Colorectal Polyps FAQs
Are colon polyps a genetic condition?
Possessing a family history of colon polyps can raise your chance of developing this condition. Some types of polyps may have a genetic correlation and can be more prevalent among relatives. Consult your GI provider regarding your personal and family history of polyps to assess your risk and the need for colorectal cancer tests.
Will colorectal polyps grow back after removal?
In general, it is rare for a colorectal polyp to regrow once it has been removed. However, some patients might have new polyps arise in other areas of the colon or rectum. For this reason, it is vital to schedule periodic colon cancer screenings as advised by your provider.
Can colorectal polyps be prevented from developing?
You may not be able to prevent polyps from arising, especially if you are at an increased risk because of your genetics. However, maintaining a healthy lifestyle might help reduce the risk of colon or rectal polyps. This involves consuming a well-balanced diet, getting plenty of exercise, avoiding tobacco use, and limiting the consumption of alcohol. Undergoing routine colonoscopy exams when you turn 45 can also help lower the chance of polyps.
How long does it take to recover following colon polyp removal?
In general, the majority of patients require about a week to recover after undergoing a polypectomy during a colonoscopy exam. Our Indianapolis Gastroenterology and Hepatology staff will provide aftercare instructions on what you can expect as you recover and when you can get back to your normal daily routine.
I was referred to Dr. Drake after my initial colonoscopy. He has performed two more this year to remove large polyps and to verify I was “all clear”. He takes time to explain the process and easy any concerns I had. He has a wonderful bedside manner and I would highly recommend him!
Dr Drake is awesome. He listens and takes his time with his patients. I will recommend him to anyone who needs a gastroenterologist.
Dr was very informative and really put me at ease before my procedure. I would highly recommend him.
It was a very good experience for me.
Dr. Orinion was very through and friendly. He listened, gave his opinion and explained things clearly.