Uterine Polyps

Uterine polyps are growths attached to the inner wall of the uterus that extend into the uterine cavity. They result from an overgrowth of cells in the lining of the uterus (endometrium). Uterine polyps are usually noncancerous (benign), although some can eventually turn into cancer (precancerous polyps). They are usually not sensitive to cyclical hormonal changes.1

Polyps may be soft and cystic or firm and fibrous; they may be pedunculated or sessile, single or multiple, and vary in size from small – with minimal uterine cavity distortion – to large, filling the whole uterine cavity.1

What are the symptoms of Uterine Polyps?

Signs and symptoms of uterine polyps include:1

  • Irregular menstrual bleeding
  • Bleeding between menstrual periods
  • Heavy menstrual periods
  • Vaginal bleeding after menopause
  • Infertility2

What happens next?

A diagnosis of polyps is often suggested by a transvaginal ultrasound but the confirmation of the diagnosis can only been made by hysteroscopy.3

Hysteroscopy also allows biopsies to be taken in order to confirm the benign or malignant nature of the polyp. Occasionally other diagnostic techniques such as a saline sonography (ultrasound scan is done after filling the uterine cavity with normal saline) may detect uterine polyps.3

How are uterine polyps treated?

Surgical removal

Blind methods to retrieve focal intrauterine pathology includes blind curettage of the endometrium or avulsion with polyp forceps. These approaches can be associated with potential uterine trauma, which can be unrecognised and lead to serious complications. Failure to remove polyps and problems with incomplete removal are also well recognised. Removal of uterine polyps should therefore be peformed with visual control (hysteroscopy).2

Hysteroscopic uterine polypectomy

Advances in hysteroscopic technology have enabled small polyps to be removed under direct vision. Fine mechanical instruments, such a scissors or biopsy forceps can be used down a 2 to 3 mm diameter working channel of a rigid operative hysteroscope. The safety and feasibility of such approaches have been reported.2

Larger polyps are often removed using a large-diameter electrosurgical hysteroscopic resection under anaesthesia. Recent technologies have been developed to allow non electrical mechanical removal of polyps in the outpatient setting. The latter technique may be performed without or with limited local anaesthesia.2

Check out the different pathologies

Uterine Fibroids

Learn More

Uterine Cancer

Learn More

Cervical Cancer

Learn More

Don't neglect your own well being

If you're experiencing any of these symptoms make time to consult your doctor or healthcare professional.

Abnormal Uterine Bleeding
Learn More
Chronic Pelvic Pain

Learn More
Menopausal Symptoms

Learn More

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1. Uterine polyps - Symptoms and causes. (2020, December 17). Mayo Clinic. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/uterine-polyps/symptomscauses/syc-20378709

2. Clark, T. J., Middleton, L. J., Cooper, N. A., Diwakar, L., Denny, E., Smith, P., Gennard, L., Stobert, L., Roberts, T. E., Cheed, V., Bingham, T., Jowett, S., Brettell, E., Connor, M., Jones, S. E., & Daniels, J. P. (2015). A randomised controlled trial of Outpatient versus inpatient Polyp Treatment (OPT) for abnormal uterine bleeding. Health Technology Assessment, 19(61), 1–194. https://doi.org/10.3310/hta19610

3. Uterine polyps - Diagnosis and treatment - Mayo Clinic. (2020, December 17). Uterine Polyps - Diagnosis and Treatment. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/uterine-polyps/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20378713

4. Uterine polyps: A common reason for irregular bleeding around menopause. (2020, February 24). Https://Helloclue.Com/. https://helloclue.com/articles/life-stages/uterine-polyps-common-reason-for-irregular-bleeding-around-menopause

5. The Health Care Industry Needs to Start Taking Women Seriously. (2015b, May 28). Harvard Business Review. https://hbr.org/2015/05/the-health-care-industry-needs-to-start-taking-women-seriously