Polyps are precancerous growths that develop in the lining of the colon or the large intestine. Polypectomy is a non-invasive procedure to remove small polyps before they can become cancerous, and relieve symptoms of bowel irregularities, abdominal pain and rectal bleeding.
Polypectomy is performed on an outpatient basis while under a sedative. You will lie on your back or side on the operating table. Your doctor will pass a scope through the anus into the colon. The endoscope is a long flexible tube with a camera on the end. Air may be instilled into the colon for a clear view. The camera provides clear visualization of the polyp. The polyps are then removed using a wire loop contained within the scope or destroyed using an electric current. The scope is removed slowly after the procedure. Your surgeon may send some of the polyp tissue for pathological examination to rule out cancer. The entire procedure may take 30 to 60 minutes to complete.
Following the procedure, you may experience cramping or bloating as a result of the air that was passed into the colon. This is temporary and will be relieved with the passing of gas. Complete recovery takes about 2 weeks.
As with any procedure, polypectomy may involve certain risks and complications such as bleeding, infection, reaction to anesthesia and colon wall damage.