A colon polyp is a growth on the surface of the colon, also called the large intestine. Sometimes, a person can have more than one colon polyp. Colon polyps can be raised or flat.
Some colon polyps are benign, which means they are not cancer. But some types of polyps may already be cancer or can become cancer. Flat polyps can be smaller and harder to see and are more likely to be cancer than raised polyps.
You may have a greater chance of getting polyps if:
Most people with colon polyps do not have symptoms. However, those that do experience:
The doctor can use one or more tests to check for colon polyps.
Talk with your doctor about getting tested for colon polyps if you’re 50 years of age or older, or earlier if you have symptoms or someone in your family has had polyps or colon cancer.
In most cases, the doctor removes colon polyps during sigmoidoscopy or colonoscopy. The polyps are then tested for cancer.