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"Can doctors remove polyps during a colonoscopy?"

ZocdocAnswersCan doctors remove polyps during a colonoscopy?


Hello. I am a 39 year old man. I am scheduled to have a colonoscopy. Will my doctor be able to remove polyps during this procedure or will I have to do another surgery if he finds polyps but does not remove them.


When you undergo your colonoscopy, the doctor performing the procedure (typically a gastroenterologist) will be looking for any abnormalities; this includes identifying polyps, which are outgrowths from the wall of the intestine. Certain types of polyps have been shown to be pre-cancerous, meaning that they can progress to cancer over a number of years if they are left untreated. Because of this risk, polyps are removed when they are identified. Usually these are removed with a small snare that is passed through the colonoscope. Rarely, the doctor will not be able to remove a polyp because of a difficult location within the intestine or if it is very broad-based and flat. In this case, your doctor may need to repeat the procedure with different techniques. Once the polyps are removed, they are sent to a pathologist, where they are reviewed on a microscopic level. The results of the pathology will be given to you by your doctor, and these results will help determine when your repeat colonoscopy should be performed.

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