Pediatric Colon Polyps

Pediatric Colon Polyps

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Summary

Colon polyps are small clumps of cells that accumulate in the colon (large intestine). Most colon polyps are benign (noncancerous).

Expanded overview

A colon polyp occurs when a small group of cells accumulate in the colon. In most cases, colon polyps are benign (noncancerous). However, some colon polyps can transform into colon cancer over time. As a general rule of thumb, the larger the colon polyp, the greater the chance that it could develop into colon cancer over time.

Types

There are two types of colon polyps:

  • Neoplastic – these types of colon polyps have a higher likelihood of turning into cancer over time (usually many years)
  • Non-neoplastic – these types of colon polyps usually do not develop into colon cancer

Causes

Certain gene mutations can cause cells to continue to grow and multiply, even when new cells aren’t needed. When this occurs in the colon and rectum, polyps can form.

Symptoms

Many children with colon polyps never experience any symptoms. When the polyps do cause signs and symptoms, they may include:

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