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Colon Polyps

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by Randall B


Symptoms are often not present. Polyps are often found during an endoscopy/colonscopy or x-ray. If symptoms are present, they can include:
  • Rectal bleeding
  • Diarrhea, constipation, and/or bloating that lasts over a period of time
  • Abdominal pain or cramping, rarely


It’s not clear how polyps can be prevented. However, the following guidelines can help you stay healthy and may help prevent not only polyps but also colon cancer:
  • Eat a high fiber diet with plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains .
  • Reduce the amount of animal fat in your diet. This occurs in beef and other meat products, as well as full-fat dairy products.
  • Exercise regularly.
  • Maintain a healthy weight.
  • If you smoke, ask your doctor how to quit.
  • See your doctor for regular screenings after the age of 50.
  • More frequent screenings may be needed if polyps are found.


American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons

National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases



Canadian Digestive Health Foundation

The Canadian Association of Gastroenterology



Colon polyps. American College of Pathologists website. Available at: . Accessed July 12, 2013.

Polyps of the colon and rectum. American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons website. Available at: . Accessed July 12, 2013.

What I need to know about colon polyps. National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse website. Available at: . Updated April 30, 2012. Accessed July 12, 2013.

2/5/2009 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance : Kim Y, Kim Y, Lee S. An association between colonic adenoma and abdominal obesity: a cross-sectional study. BMC Gastroenterol . 2009;9:4.

5/11/2009 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance : Jacobs ET, Ahnen DJ, Ashbeck EL, et al. Association between body mass index and colorectal neoplasia at follow-up colonoscopy: a pooling study. Am J Epidemiol . 2009;169:657-666.

7/6/2009 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance : Wise LA, Rosenberg L, Palmer JR, Adams-Campbell LL. Anthropometric risk factors for colorectal polyps in African-American women. Obesity (Silver Spring) . 2008;16:859-868. Epub 2008 Jan 24.


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