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It is an overgrowth of tissue in the lining (endometrium) of the uterus. It’s similar to a skin tag. This means that it’s basically normal tissue but growing in an abnormal form.
A lot of polyps are very small (a few millimetres in diameter) and don’t compromise reproductive capabilities. With that said, large or multiple polyps may interfere with reproduction by causing infertility or increasing the risks for miscarriage.
Similar to an intrauterine device (IUD), uterine polyps may act as a contraceptive by preventing an embryo from implanting in the uterus.
Some evidence suggests that the body attacks polyps as foreign elements. This may lead to inflammation which will make it more difficult for implantation.
Polyps may cause blockage where the fallopian tube enters the uterine cavity. This prevents the sperm from finding an egg to fertilize. Polyps may also block the canal of the cervix which directly blocks the uterus. Polyps may also contribute to miscarriages. Polyps can play a major role in infertility.
The most common symptom of polyps is irregular menses. Other indicators may include:
Some women may experience light bleeding or spotting. Some women may not even experience any symptoms.
Options in women with milder cases may include:
Uterine polyps can contain cancerous cells. Your doctor will speak to you about the next steps for treatment if this is the case. Thankfully, less than 1 percent of polyps are associated with cancer.
Symptoms of uterine polyps are similar to those of endometrial cancer and other serious conditions. Hence, it’s important to visit a doctor when you the symptoms first occur. Uterine polyps rarely recur after treatment. When they do, they’ll require more treatment.