• adenoma;
  • children;
  • colonoscopy;
  • juvenile polyp;
  • large intestine;
  • polypectomy;
  • rectal bleeding

Abstract Background: Fiberoptic colonoscopy has been a routine therapeutic modality for colorectal polyps in pediatric patients. Methods of bowel preparation, anesthesia, area of investigation and treatment depending on histopathology are still controversial. In order to clarify the rationale of pediatric colonoscopy the present study was performed.

Methods and Results: We analyzed the results of colonoscopic examination in 21 patients with colorectal polyps. Mean patient age was 3.7 years, with a range of 1–7 years. Rectal polyps were seen in 10 cases: seven had a solitary polyp (juvenile in six and adenoma in one) and three had multiple polyps (juvenile, lymphoid and Peutz–Jeghers coexisting with hyperplastic polyps). Sigmoid colon polyps were seen in 10 cases: all were solitary juvenile polyps, but one had adenomatous change. Another had multiple Peutz– Jeghers polyps located in the entire colon. Flexible colonoscopic polypectomy was performed in 16 patients and transanal polypectomy was performed in four patients. Autoamputation was seen in two cases of juvenile polyp (resection was ultimately performed in a case having repeated autoamputation). After removing the polyps, all patients have had no recurrence for a period ranging from 6 months to 15 years, except for one case with Peutz–Jeghers syndrome.

Conclusions: Most polyps are located in the rectum or the sigmoid colon. Although the majority are solitary or juvenile polyps, because histopathologic variety is seen in pediatric colon polyps, histopathologic examination of each polyp is important to detect any dysplastic or adenomatous element with malignant potential and to make a suitable follow-up schedule. Symptomatic polyps should be removed by fiberoptic colonoscopy or transanal resection with total colon endoscopic examination under general anesthesia. Polypectomy using the electrocautery snare and clip is effective and safe and bowel preparation using polyethylene glycol electrolyte solution is sufficient for the procedure.