June 22, 2023
An adenoma is a non-cancerous tumour made up of cells that connect together to form round structures called glands. These are very common tumours and they can occur in almost any location in the body. A gland is a group of cells that connect together to form a ring with a hollow centre called a lumen. Glands produce a variety of substances that help organs function normally. For example, the glands in the stomach make and release substances that help break down food.
When examined under a microscope, the glands in an adenoma look abnormal compared to the glands normally found in that area of the body. For example, the cells are often hyperchromatic (darker) than normal cells and the glands are closer together (there is very little connective tissue between the glands). These tumours also often have more glands and the glands are less organized than the glands in normal tissue. These differences allow your pathologist to recognize an adenoma from normal glands.
There are many different types of adenomas and the type depends on where in the body the tumour develops and the type of cells making the glands.
Common types of adenomas include:
Adenomas are non-cancerous tumours. However, some are considered pre-cancerous because they can turn into cancer over time. The risk associated with an adenoma depends on the type, its location in the body, and whether your pathologist sees any evidence of an additional cellular change called dysplasia. Talk to your doctor about the risk associated with your type of adenoma.