Polyps are small meaty growths that commonly occur on the inner walls of the colon. They commence as very small outgrowths and gradually develop. A fairly rare hereditary condition is called familial polyposis coil, and these tumours frequently undergo malignant change, turning into cancer. Single polyps are often discovered during colonoscopies. Sometimes these may present as bleeding from the bowel.
It is uncertain whether these develop into cancers. However, with the wide use of the fibre-optic colonoscope for examining bowels today, and their ready accessibility, these polyps are now simply removed by means of the operating arm of the colonoscope. It may then be subjected to pathological examination. Invariably, removal brings a cure.