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  1. Medical Service

    Head & Neck Surgery

    The Brooklyn Hospital Center's Division of Head and Neck Surgery manages the diagnosis and surgical treatment of benign and malignant tumors of the head and neck. Staffed by a team of highly capable sur ...

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    Otolaryngology

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    Pediatric Surgery

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    Plastic Surgery

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    Allergy & Immunology

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    Neurology

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    Nuclear Medicine

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  8. Medical Service

    Pediatric Genetics

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  9. Physician

    Heather MacAdam

    Pediatric Emergency Medicine Physician The Brooklyn Hospital Center 121 DeKalb Avenue Brooklyn NY 11201 Specialty:  Pediatric Emergency Medicine Medical School:  University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine Internship:  Jackson Memorial Hospital Residenc ...

  10. Medical Service

    Speech & Hearing

    rehabilitation for head and neck cancer patients Voice disorders (vocal nod ...

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    Cancer Care

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    Cared For — Body and Mind

    When I woke up in the middle of the night with a very painful "charley horse" in my calf after a trip to Washington DC, I thought nothing of it. I just figured I had strained it from the active day, no big deal. But the pain lingered on, intensi ...

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Colorectal polyps

Definition

A colorectal polyp is a growth on the lining of the colon or rectum.

Alternative Names

Intestinal polyps; Polyps - colorectal; Adenomatous polyps; Hyperplastic polyps; Villous adenomas

Causes

Polyps of the colon and rectum are usually benign. This means they are not cancerous and do not spread. You may have one or many polyps. They become more common with age.

Common polyp types include:

Polyps bigger than 1 centimeter have a higher cancer risk than polyps under 1 centimeter. Risk factors include:

Polyps may also be linked to some inherited disorders, including:

Symptoms

Polyps usually do not have symptoms. When present, symptoms may include:

Exams and Tests

The health care provider will perform a physical exam. A large polyp may be felt during a rectal exam.

Most polyps are found with the following tests:

Treatment

Colorectal polyps should be removed because some can develop into cancer.  In most cases, the polyps may be removed during a colonoscopy. 

For people with adenomatous polyps, new polyps can appear in the future. Follow-up colonoscopy is usually recommended 1 to 10 years later, depending on the:

In rare cases, when polyps are very likely to turn into cancer, the doctor will recommend a colectomy. This is surgery to remove part of the colon that has the polyps.

Outlook (Prognosis)

Outlook is excellent if the polyps are removed. Polyps that are not removed can develop into cancer over time.

When to Contact a Medical Professional

Call your health care provider if you have:

Prevention

 To reduce your risk of developing polyps:

Colonoscopy prevents colon cancer by removing polyps before they become cancer. People age 50 or older should consider having a colonoscopy or other screening test. This may reduce the chance of developing colon cancer, or at least help catch it in its most treatable stage. Those with a family history of colon cancer or colon polyps may need to be screened at an earlier age.

Taking aspirin or similar medicines may help reduce the risk of new polyps. Be aware that these medicines can have serious side effects if taken for a long time. Side effects include bleeding in the stomach or colon and heart disease. Talk with your doctor before taking these medicines.

References

Cooper K, Squires H, Carroll C, et al. Chemoprevention of colorectal cancer: systematic review and economic evaluation. Health Technol Assess. 2010;14(32):1-206.

Itzkowitz SH, Potack J. Colonic polyps and polyposis syndromes. In: Feldman M, Friedman LS, Brandt LJ, eds. Sleisenger and Fordtran's Gastrointestinal and Liver Disease Pathophysiology/Diagnosis/Management. 9th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Elsevier Saunders; 2010:chap 122.

National Comprehensive Cancer Network. NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology (NCCN Guidelines): Colorectal cancer screening. Version 2.2013. Available at http://www.nccn.org/professionals/physician_gls/pdf/colorectal_screening.pdf Accessed October 24, 2013.



Review Date: 10/13/2013
Reviewed By: George F. Longstreth, MD, Department of Gastroenterology, Kaiser Permanente Medical Care Program, San Diego, California. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Bethanne Black, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.
The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
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  1. Medical Service

    Orthopaedic Services

    of the foot, knee, shoulder, hip, hand or other joints. We also treat bone ... gery of the Foot, Ankle, Knee and Shoulder Cartilage and Tendon Repair Inpatient ... e Meniscus Tears Torn ACL and Other Ligament Tears Foot and Ankle Achilles ...

  2. Medical Service

    Podiatry

    The Surgical Division of Podiatry offers quality, compassionate health care and state-of-the-art therapies to treat a wide range of foot and ankle disorders. Conditions Treated ingrown toenails ankle sprains ...

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    Geriatrics

    entia, Depression, Memory Loss Urinary and Bowel Incontinence Foot Ulcers and Other Slow Healing ...

  4. Physician

    Heather MacAdam

    Pediatric Emergency Medicine Physician The Brooklyn Hospital Center 121 DeKalb Avenue Brooklyn NY 11201 Specialty:  Pediatric Emergency Medicine Medical School:  University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine Internship:  Jackson Memorial Hospital Residenc ...

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    Healthy Back 2 School Fair!

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    Saturday in the Park! Annual health fair in Fort Greene Park helps us keep Brooklyn healthy.

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    Saturday In The Park-- TBHC Health Fair Emphasizes Wellness and Prevention

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