If you are diagnosed with endometrial polyps, what should you do? Treat or watch and wait? If you choose to treat, how should you treat your polyps?
While the ultimate decision is up to the individual, the article and comments below give some basic info to those women trying to think through their choices. Two questions to ask yourself are:
- What are the chances of endometrial polyps becoming cancer?
- Are you pre or post memopausal?
- Have you experienced bleeding?
“A total of 17 articles were selected for review, representing a patient population of 10,572 women. Metaanalysis revealed that 377 women were identified as having endometrial neoplasia. Of these, 5.4% were postmenopausal and 1.7% were premenopausal; 4.2% of these women had experienced symptoms of bleeding, whereas 2.2% were asymptomatic. “Women who were menopausal with polyps had an almost 4-fold higher likelihood of that polyp being malignant than when polyps were diagnosed in reproductive-aged women,” said Dr. Kaunitz. Correspondingly, a polyp was 2-fold more likely to be malignant in women with bleeding than in those who were asymptomatic…
What Happens When You Watch and Wait?
From January to July of 2010, Dr. Hartman examined 300 women who had been diagnosed with endometrial polyps in the previous 2 to 43 months. The women ranged in age from 22 to 78 years. Factors considered in this analysis were location of polyp, time interval between studies, menopausal status, abnormal bleeding, blood flow, endometrial thickness, and patient age.
Results of these examinations showed that in 41 (13.7%) of these women, the polyp had naturally resolved; in 125 (41.7%), there was no change in polyp size; in 61 (20.3%), there was a decrease of at least 1 mm; in 49 (16.3%), there was an increase of greater than 50% of the originally measured polyp diameter; and in 24 (8.0%), there was a greater than 50% increase in polyp diameter.”
“Malignant polyps represented 2.5% of the total sample. Postmenopausal bleeding and age greater than 60 years were the only factors that remained associated with a higher risk of malignancy with a prevalence ratio of 3.67 (95% CI, 1.69–7.97) and 1.5 (95% CI, 1.01–1.09), respectively…”
Definition of endomtrial polyp
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
An endometrial polyp or uterine polyp is a mass in the inner lining of the uterus. They may have a large flat base (sessile) or be attached to the uterus by an elongated pedicle(pedunculated). Pedunculated polyps are more common than sessile ones. They range in size from a few millimeters to several centimeters. If pedunculated, they can protrude through the cervix into the vagina. Small blood vessels may be present, particularly in large polyps.
No definitive cause of endometrial polyps is known, but they appear to be affected by hormone levels and grow in response to circulating estrogen. They often cause no symptoms. Where they occur, symptoms include irregular menstrual bleeding, bleeding between menstrual periods, excessively heavy menstrual bleeding (menorrhagia), and vaginal bleeding after menopause. Bleeding from the blood vessels of the polyp contributes to an increase of blood loss during menstruation and blood “spotting” between menstrual periods, or after menopause. If the polyp protrudes through the cervix into the vagina, pain (dysmenorrhea) may result.Cause and symptoms
Polyps can be surgically removed using curettage with or without hysteroscopy. When curettage is performed without hysteroscopy, polyps may be missed. To reduce this risk, the uterus can be first explored using grasping forceps at the beginning of the curettage procedure. Hysteroscopy involves visualising the endometrium (inner lining of the uterus) and polyp with a camera inserted through the cervix. If it is a large polyp, it can be cut into sections before each section is removed. If cancerous cells are discovered, a hysterectomy (surgical removal of the uterus) may be performed. A hysterectomy would usually not be considered if cancer has been ruled out. Whichever method is used, polyps are usually treated under general anesthetic.
Prognosis and complications
Endometrial polyps are usually benign although some may be precancerous or cancerous. About 0.5% of endometrial polyps contain adenocarcinoma cells. Polyps can increase the risk of miscarriage in women undergoing IVF treatment. If they develop near the fallopian tubes, they may lead to difficulty in becoming pregnant. Although treatments such as hysteroscopy usually cure the polyp concerned, recurrence of endometrial polyps is frequent. Untreated, small polyps may regress on their own.
Risk factors and epidemiology
Endometrial polyps usually occur in women in their 40s and 50s. Risk factors include obesity, high blood pressure and a history of cervical polyps. Taking tamoxifen or hormone replacement therapy can also increase the risk of uterine polyps. The use of an IntraUterine System containing levonorgestrel in women taking Tamoxifen may reduce the incidence of polyps. Endometrial polyps occur in up to 10% of women. It is estimated that they are present in 25% of women with abnormal vaginal bleeding.
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