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Patient care — surgical procedures

Polyps biopsy: When polyps are discovered in a sigmoidoscopy (an inspection of the lower third of the large intestine), they are retrieved to be tested for cancer. If a large amount of polyps are found, a more thorough examination of the entire length of the large intestine (a colonoscopy) may be recommended. A polyp is an outgrowth of normal or abnormal tissue that may be attached by a pedicle. They are commonly found in organs with many blood vessels, such as the uterus, rectum, and nose. Some polyps are cancerous and likely to spread (malignant) while others are normal (benign).

How a polyp biopsy is taken depends on the location:

For areas of the body that are visible, a topical anesthetic is applied, and a small piece of the tissue that appears to be abnormal is removed. The suspect tissue is sent to the laboratory where technicians determine if the polyp is benign or malignant.

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