What’s a Nasal Polyp?


What is a nasal polyp? Well, its similar to other polyps in other parts of the body….but in your nose!

The similarity, however, is only in that its a tissue growth that is not a part of the normal bodies anatomy.

Our bodies make polyps for a variety of reasons. Sometimes they are triggered by things in our environment, but genetics seems to be a big part of why one person develops them and another person doesn’t.

In general, polyps aren’t a dangerous condition regardless of where they are in the body. But they are a nuisance for sure and need to be addressed as they can disrupt normal bodily functions.

In the case of nasal polyps, the primary function they disrupt is airflow.  Most if not all patients will present in my clinic with a complaint of nasal congestion that is almost constant.

Occasionally, nasal polyps will expand into the key areas for sinus function and start a process of frequent sinus infections with sinus pressure and pain, sore throat and general malaise.

Often, a nasal polyp can be seen with just a headlight and nasal speculum in the office without need for endoscopy. This exam is not uncomfortable in any way. Its quick and easy if you know what you are looking for!

The most common trigger for nasal polyps in the nose would be a history of allergy to pollens in the environment. Mold allergy is a common finding on allergy testing in patients with nasal polyps as well.

Polyps can occur in children and adults.

The treatment for nasal polyps is often non-surgical, but if necessary modern surgical treatment to remove nasal polyps is simple and painless.

If you have any symptoms that concern you for nasal polyps don’t be alarmed. Just find a specialist who deals with the treatment both medically and surgically for nasal polyps and get it checked out!


Jason B Sigmon, MD, FAAOA