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Serrated polyps are considered precursor lesions that account for 15% to 30% of colorectal cancers, and they are overrepresented as a cause of interval cancers. They are difficult to detect and resect comprehensively; however, recent data suggest that high definition endoscopy, chromoendoscopy (via spray catheter, pump or orally), narrow band imaging, split-dose bowel preparation and a slower withdrawal (>6 minutes) can all improve detection. Cold snare resection is effective and safe for these lesions, including cold snare piecemeal endoscopic mucosal resection, which is likely to become the standard of care for lesions >10 mm in size. Sessile serrated lesions ≥10 mm in size, those exhbiting dysplasia, or traditional serrated adenomas increase the chance of future advanced neoplasia. Thus, a consensus is emerging: a surveillance examination at 3 years should be recommended if these lesions are detected. Serrated lesions likely carry equivalent risk to adenomas, so future guidelines may consider serrated class lesions and adenomas together for risk stratification. Patients with serrated polyposis syndrome should undergo surveillance every 1 to 2 years once the colon is cleared of larger lesions, and their first degree relatives should undergo screening every 5 years starting at age 40.

Original publication




Journal article


Gut and liver

Publication Date



Translational Gastroenterology Unit and Oxford NIHR Biomedical Research Centre, Experimental Medicine Division, Nuffield Department of Clinical Medicine, University of Oxford, John Radcliffe Hospital.