Anal polyps are growths that develop along the lining of your bowel and anal canal. While polyps are fairly common and typically do not manifest symptoms, more severe cases can cause diarrhea, constipation, mucus in the stool and bloody stools. There is also the risk of anal cancer if polyps are found, although your doctor must first determine if the polyps are adenomatous (precursor to cancer) or hyperplastic (benign and non-cancerous).
Through a biopsy and colonoscopy, your doctor can confirm the status of your polyps and check for any proximal lesions in the rectum and colon. While adenomatous polyps may be precursor lesions to colorectal cancer and are larger in size, hyperplastic polyps are usually smaller than 5 mm wide and non-threatening. Polyps larger than one centimeter are considered risky and should be addressed immediately, as polyps that are not removed will continue to grow and can potentially become cancerous.