Colon polyps are growths of tissue on the inside lining of the colon. They begin as small lesions and can grow larger with time. Some polyps are pre-cancerous and can progress to colon cancer if they are not removed. Colon polyps are found during a screening colonoscopy. A colonoscopy is recommended for all individuals age 45 or older. If you have a family history of colorectal cancer, you may be advised to start screening at a younger age.
Most colon polyps are small and can be removed during the colonoscopy. On occasion the polyps may be too large to be safely removed during a colonoscopy. In this case, the polyp may need to be treated surgically by removing the segment of the colon that contains the polyp, and attaching the ends of the colon back together. Often these surgeries are done in a minimally invasive fashion, using a laparoscopic or robotic approach and small incisions to lessen discomfort and hasten recovery.