Colorectal Polyps in Lubbock, TX

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Colon polyps, also called colorectal polyps, are a frequent GI development among adults in the U.S. The label "colorectal" references the colon as well as the rectum. Several health situations which impact the colon more often than not include the rectum, which is why they are usually talked about together. A colon polyp is a polyp (a mass made up of clumped cells) found on the lining of the rectum or colon.

Polyps by themselves are typically benign and usually don't present symptoms; however, colon and rectal polyps should be removed because they can, after a time, become cancerous. To obtain a diagnosis for colorectal polyps, the GI doctors at Lubbock Digestive Disease Associates commonly carry out colonoscopy services. Please get in touch with our facility to schedule a colonoscopy in Lubbock, TX.

Colorectal polyps are the result of cells massing or dividing at an abnormal rate. The medical community has yet to find a conclusive reason as to why this happens. However, there are relationships and risk factors that are associated with people who live with colorectal polyps.

Common risk factors for colon polyps are:

  • Ulcerative colitis
  • "Typical Western diet" (high in fat and low in fiber)
  • Crohn's disease
  • Having a history or family history of colorectal polyps
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • High consumption of alcohol
  • Being overweight
  • Genetic history
  • Being over the age of 45
  • Tobacco use

Hereditary genetic conditions can elevate the chance of developing colon polyps. Such conditions may include:

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

It's not uncommon for colorectal polyps to develop without any noticeable symptoms. The most common symptoms of colorectal polyps that might manifest are:

  • Constipation
  • Shortness of breath
  • Blood in the stool
  • Pain in the abdominal area
  • Exhaustion
  • Diarrhea (lasting longer than a week)
  • Weakness
  • Iron deficiency anemia

If you are experiencing any combination of the listed symptoms, are 45 years of age or above, or have a family history of colon cancer or colorectal polyps and are in the Lubbock, TX area, reach out to us for more information on colon cancer screenings.

Polyps are often found during routine colonoscopies, and most of the time, they are not harmful. Polyps discovered while undergoing a colonoscopy will typically be extracted during a colonoscopy (polypectomy) and assessed for signs of cancer. Should it happen that your colon or rectal polyps are found to be noncancerous, then your physician might recommend regular colorectal cancer screenings in the future. If a polyp is determined to be malignant (cancerous), you and your Lubbock Digestive Disease Associates physician will discuss the most advantageous steps moving forward.

The typical avenue to address colon polyps is by removing them. During the course of a colonoscopy (or flexible sigmoidoscopy), polyps in the rectum and colon can be excised as a part of a procedure called a polypectomy. In extreme cases, a part of or the entirety of your rectum or colon may need to be removed.

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Are colorectal polyps hereditary?

A familial history of colon polyps can raise your risk of this health condition. Some types of polyps have a genetic link and may be more prevalent among family members. Consult your GI provider regarding your medical and family history to determine your risk and the need for colorectal cancer tests.

Will colorectal polyps grow back?

Generally, it is unusual for a colon polyp to grow back once it has been completely removed. However, some people might have new polyps arise in other portions of the colon or rectum. It is, therefore, very important to undergo routine colorectal cancer screenings as recommended by your gastroenterologist.

Can colon polyps be avoided?

It may not be possible to keep polyps from developing, especially if you have a greater risk due to hereditary factors. But healthy lifestyle choices may help lessen the chance of colon or rectal polyps. This includes following a balanced diet, avoiding tobacco use, limiting the consumption of alcohol, and getting plenty of exercise. Having periodic colonoscopy exams upon turning 45 can also help lower the risk of polyp development.

How long does it take to recover after colon polyp removal?

Most individuals generally require about a week to recover following polyp removal during a colonoscopy exam. Our Lubbock Digestive Disease Associates staff will provide post-op information on what to anticipate during the recovery period and when you can return to your normal activities.

Routine colonoscopies allow your physician a chance to identify, extract, and study any colon and rectal polyps they might find. As a board-certified group of skilled gastroenterology specialists, Lubbock Digestive Disease Associates works to provide a patient-focused experience. To find out more about colon and rectal polyps and how they can be located and excised, we encourage you to reach out to our gastroenterology practice in Lubbock, TX today.

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