A vaginal polyp is a tiny growth which arises near the cervix which is the opening between the vagina and uterus. These polyps are mostly benign in nature and are very rarely found to cause any types of symptoms. Vaginal polyps are created when some group of cells like the blood vessels within it form some abnormal growth. These are very common and often traced in women who are above 20 years of age, especially in women with multiple child births. Occurrence of vaginal polyps before attaining puberty or after menopause is very uncommon. Although these polyps are mostly non cancerous, they should be removed completely after observing them through microscope. The chance of vaginal polyp cancer is less than 1%.
Usually vaginal polyps never show any symptoms and most often are traced during the pelvic examination. But still some symptoms can be seen due to vaginal polyps. They are:
Skin tags have been more often related to pregnancy as their occurrence increases during this period. This is so because the metabolism of women during pregnancy is very active. These skin tags at times grow in the vaginal area and form polyps. These polyps sometimes start bleeding due to excessive rubbing during intercourse or on their own. In such cases, after the pregnancy, these polyps eventually disappears after few months from the delivery and do not pose problem.
Most of the vaginal polyps grow on the thin tissue stems and hence can be eliminated by easy twisting method. The whole process of removal does not take long duration and even is performed on outpatient arrangement. For the removal, the physician dilates the vagina by means of a speculum and administer local anesthesia to make the concerned area numb. Surgical equipment is then used for cutting off the polyp from the base. Slight cramping or little bleeding can be experienced by the patient later on. In case of uterine polyps, the surgeons use slightly different procedure termed as D & C (dilatation and curettage) in which the polyps are removed or scrapped off by using instrument called curette after dilating the vagina.
Laser therapy or chemicals disintegrate or freeze tissue growth and can lead to their death thereby killing the polyp growths. But this treatment can lead to killing of surrounding tissue as well and stop its growth. Hence such a therapy should be performed only when the polyp is surely benign and the procedure should be implemented after considering all the pros and cons of the treatment and its relative effectiveness.
Yes, unfortunately though vaginal polyps have been found to recur and more surgical procedure can be needed for removing it again. In some cases, when the polyps go on increasing and growing after continuous removal leading to bleeding and pain, hysterectomy is advised. .