Objectives: Delayed hemorrhage is an infrequent, but serious complication of colonoscopic polypectomy. Large size is the only polyp-related factor that has been unequivocally proven to increase the risk of delayed bleeding. It has been suggested that location in the right hemi-colon is also a risk factor. The objective of this study was to determine whether polyp location is an independent risk factor for delayed post-polypectomy hemorrhage.
Methods: A retrospective case-control study was conducted in two university hospitals and two community hospitals.
Results: Thirty-nine cases and 117 controls were identified. In multivariate analysis, size and location were found to be independent polyp-related risk factors for delayed type hemorrhage. The risk increased by 13% for every 1 mm increase in polyp diameter (odds ratio (OR) 1.13, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.05-1.20, P<0.001). Polyps located in the right hemi-colon had an OR of 4.67 (1.88-11.61, P=0.001) for delayed hemorrhage. Polyps in the cecum seemed to be especially at high risk in univariate analysis (OR 13.82, 95% CI 2.66-71.73), but this could not be assessed in multivariate analysis as the number of cases was too small. Polyp type (sessile or pedunculated) was not a risk factor.
Conclusions: Polyp location in the right hemi-colon seems to be an independent and substantial risk factor for delayed post-polypectomy hemorrhage. A low threshold for preventive hemostatic measures is advised when removing polyps from this region.