By Jason Wasserman MD PhD FRCPC
May 11, 2023
A fundic gland polyp is a non-cancerous growth that develops from the cells lining the inside of the stomach. It is the most common type of polyp in the stomach.
The stomach is divided into four parts: cardia, fundus, body, and pylorus. Most fundic gland polyps typically arise in the fundus or body of the stomach.
Most fundic gland polyps do not cause any symptoms and the polyp is discovered incidentally when an examination of the stomach is performed for another reason.
Most fundic gland polyps are associated with medications called proton pump inhibitors. Multiple polyps may develop in people with a genetic syndrome called familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP).
The diagnosis of fundic gland polyp is usually made after part or all of the polyp is removed during a procedure called endoscopy. This procedure involves using a camera attached to a long tube to see the inside of the stomach. The tissue removed is then sent to a pathologist for examination under the microscope.
When examined under the microscope, fundic gland polyps are made up of epithelial cells connected together to form glands. A combination of cells normally found in the stomach, specifically foveolar cells, parietal cells, and chief cells, are usually found in these glands. The glands in a polyp are often described as hyperplastic because they are larger than the normal glands found in the stomach.
Dysplasia is a precancerous pattern of growth that is sometimes seen in a fundic gland polyp. Polyps with dysplasia need to be removed completely because they can turn into a type of cancer called adenocarcinoma over time. Dysplasia is very rare in fundic gland polyps caused by proton pump inhibitors but is can be seen in patients with a genetic syndrome associated with multiple polyps.