A polyp is a smooth, round or oval mass that projects from the bowel membrane. These may be broad-based, but are generally on a stalk. There is a genetic trait in some cases and then this condition is known as familial polyposis coli when numerous polyps are found throughout the bowel. There is an inevitable change in polyposis coli from a benign to a malignant polyp in this condition and treatment is currently considered to be a total colectomy . Most polyps in the bowel are not dangerous except in this condition. Found in the colon on investigations such as colonoscopy or barium enemas, polyps are often removed because of a risk of malignant change.

Investigation is usually initiated because of blood or mucus found in the stool or a change in bowel habit. Polyps may be found quite coinci-dentally or may be the cause of these symptoms. It is rare but they may enlarge to a point that obstructs the bowel, creating symptoms of bloating, constipation and painful distension.

Bowel polyps are considered by the holistic world to be created through poor diet and a tendency to a retentive body type, which holds toxins in the system and encourages irritation of cells, which then proliferate.


Any change in bowel habit or the presence of blood or mucus should be investigated by a GP and a specialist if necessary.

A polyp is best removed because of its potential for change into a bowel cancer. A polyp is a warning of lifestyle and diet faults. Increase fibre and water intake and reduce smoking and refined foods.

Homeopathic and herbal treatments may be considered and attempts to remove the polyps without surgery are possible but they require expert treatment from a homeopathic practitioner for constitutional prescribing and from an experienced herbalist.

Polyps are generally an indication of a retentive tendency, and psychological and spiritual changes to encourage a more outgoing personality and expansive spiritual belief must be encouraged.

Pre- and postoperative care should be followed .