NCCN Guidelines for Patients
Rectal Cancer, Version 1.2017
Rectal cancer often starts in a polyp. A polyp is an
overgrowth of cells that line the inner rectal wall.
. Polyps need to be removed and tested
for cancer. An endoscopic polypectomy is a minor
surgery that removes polyps.
Not all polyps are the same. They differ in size,
shape, and how their cells look. There are three
types of rectal polyps.
cells that don’t look like normal rectal cells.
They are the most common type of polyp. Most
do not become cancer, but most polyps with
cancer started as adenomas.
have cells that grow fast.
They are often found in the last part of the colon
and in the rectum. They rarely become cancer.
often grow after a flare-
up of an inflammatory bowel disease. They can
have any shape. The chance of them becoming
cancer is low.
Sessile polyps are flat polyps that grow flush along
the rectal wall and do not have a stalk. Sometimes,
they can be hard to spot. Pedunculated polyps are
shaped like mushrooms. They have a stalk and
round top. Serrated is a term for any polyp that has
a saw-tooth pattern. Sessile serrated adenomas are
rare but have been linked to cancer.
Rectal cancer basics
A rectal polyp is an overgrowth of cells that line
the inner surface of the rectal wall. Rectal cancer
often starts in a polyp. However, most polyps do
not become cancer.
We are all very busy with our
lives. However, CRC screening
is quick and easy. If completed
in a timely manner, it can mean
the difference between life and
death. Think of it this way. If
you are clear, you only need a
colonoscopy at age 50, 60, and
70. That is only three times in
your entire life. No big deal.
Survivor, Stage I