What are cervical polyps?
Cervical polyps are growths in the cervical canal. This is the passage between your uterus and your vagina. Almost all cervical polyps are noncancerous (benign).
Most cervical polyps are first discovered during a pelvic exam. Usually only a single polyp develops, though sometimes two or three are found during an exam.
What causes them?
The cause of cervical polyps is not entirely understood. They may result from infection. They may also result from long-term (chronic) inflammation, an abnormal response to an increase in estrogen levels, or congestion of blood vessels in the cervical canal.
What are the symptoms?
Polyps often occur without symptoms. But some people may have symptoms of abnormal vaginal bleeding. This can include heavy menstrual bleeding, bleeding between periods or after sex, and bleeding after menopause
And in some cases, cervical polyps may be inflamed and rarely can become infected, causing vaginal discharge of yellow or white mucus.
How are cervical polyps treated?
The most common treatment is removal of the polyp during a pelvic exam. This can be done simply by gently twisting the polyp, tying it tightly at the base, or removing it with special forceps. A solution is applied to the base of the polyp to stop any bleeding.
Polyps do not need to be removed unless they are causing symptoms that bother you, are very large, or have an unusual appearance.
Almost all cervical polyps are noncancerous (benign). Your doctor may decide to send the polyp to the lab to have it tested, but testing is not always needed.
Current as of: April 19, 2023
Author: Healthwise Staff
Clinical Review Board: All Healthwise education is reviewed by a team that includes physicians, nurses, advanced practitioners, registered dieticians, and other healthcare professionals.