Clinical FAQs


What are the different kinds of polyps?

  • Hyperplasic polyps are considered low risk for cancer as they have little chance of becoming malignant. Usually, your physician will not need to repeat the colonoscopy for 10 years.
  • Tubular adenoma or adenomatous polyps are the most common type of polyp. They are a definite cancer risk. The longer such a polyp is allowed to grow, the greater risk of colon cancer. However, polyps grow slowly and may take years to turn cancerous.
  • Villous adenoma or tubulovillous adenoma is a more serious polyp. This type has a very high risk of cancer if allowed to grow. They are often larger in size and sessile. Sessile means that the main body of the polyp is attached to the inside wall of the colon instead of being attached on a stalk. Sessile polyps can be more difficult to remove.
  • Inflammatory polyps are the most common type in patients with ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease. They are often referred to as pseudo-polyps or false polyps, as they are a chronic inflammatory reaction of the colon wall. They are not cancerous.

What’s the difference between diverticulosis and diverticulitis?

  • Diverticulosis: Many people have small pouches in the lining of the colon or large intestine that bulge outward through weak spots. Each pouch is called a diverticulum; multiple pouches are called diverticula. The condition of having diverticula is called diverticulosis. About 10 percent of Americans aged 40 or older are diagnosed with diverticulosis.
  • Diverticulitis: This condition involves small, bulging sacs or pouches of the inner lining of the intestine that become inflamed or infected. Most often these pouches are in the large intestine (colon). The most common symptom of diverticulitis is abdominal pain with tenderness on the left side of the abdomen. Usually, the pain is severe and comes on suddenly, but it can be mild and become worse over several days. A person may experience fever, cramping, nausea, vomiting, and chills.

What’s the difference between Crohn’s disease and Ulcerative Colitis?
Crohn’s and Ulcerative colitis are the two primary forms of Irritable Bowel Disease. The two diseases share many symptoms but each is treated very differently. Ulcerative colitis affects the lining of the large intestine (colon and rectum).

Ulcerative colitis patients tend to have pain in the lower left part of the abdomen. These patients may also experience some bleeding from the rectum during bowel movements. Crohn’s patients may experience inflammation anywhere along the digestive tract from the mouth to the anus. Crohn’s disease patients may experience pain in the lower right abdomen.

What do the measurements of polyps actually mean (i.e., your polyp was 10mm so it’s about the size of a….)?

  • A 10mm polyp is about the size of the tip of your pinkie.


If hemorrhoids were found, were they removed?
Hemorrhoids are not removed during a colonoscopy. If deemed necessary, a hemorrhoidectomy or a hemorrhoid banding may be recommended to you. Your physician will review this recommendation with you before it is scheduled.

When will my stools be back to normal?
Each person is different and results may vary but most return to normal after resuming a solid food diet.

What do I do if I see blood in my stool?
Some blood may be noted on the bathroom tissue after wiping due to the invasive nature of the colonoscopy. However, if you experience ANY bleeding after an upper endoscopy or bleeding from your rectum that you estimate as more than a ‘teaspoon full’ of blood, please call your doctor or the main number at 804-285-8206 immediately. For large amounts of bleeding, dizziness, or severe abdominal pain, proceed to the Emergency Room.

How long do hemorrhoids last?
Typically, people begin feeling better after two weeks. However, there are many factors that weigh into how painful hemorrhoids can be and how long they can last.

Have any other questions that aren’t answered on any of our FAQs pages? To speak to a specialist, contact us today!