pol·​yp | \ ˈpä-ləp How to pronounce polyp (audio) \

Definition of polyp

1 : the sessile form of cnidarian (such as a coral or sea anemone) typically having a hollow cylindrical body closed and attached at one end and opening at the other by a central mouth surrounded by tentacles armed with nematocysts
2 : a growth projecting from a mucous membrane (as of the colon or vocal cords)

Other Words from polyp

polypoid \ ˈpä-​lə-​ˌpȯid How to pronounce polyp (audio) \ adjective

Examples of polyp in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web If a polyp is spotted during the course of a colonoscopy, it gets removed and retrieved for further testing. Kathryn Watson, SELF, 1 Apr. 2022 This week, Biden's physician, Dr. Kevin O'Connor, said in a statement obtained by PEOPLE that the 79-year-old politician had a single, three-millimeter polyp removed from his ascending colon during the procedure that took place last week. Nicholas Rice, PEOPLE.com, 25 Nov. 2021 But even when a benign polyp is found during a simple screening, patients sometimes end up with an unexpected bill. Emmarie Huetteman, Fortune, 27 May 2022 Where the discovery of a polyp or a lump might avert progress of colon or breast cancer, blood cancer clinicians have few ways to treat patients who are on the cusp of developing cancer. Angus Chen, STAT, 24 Apr. 2022 Death is often preventable through regular screenings because colorectal cancer takes up to 10 to 15 years to develop from a collection of cells called a polyp, according to Tampa’s Moffitt Cancer Center. Caroline Catherman, orlandosentinel.com, 11 Feb. 2022 This allows a biopsy to be done or a polyp to be removed with a good safety record, although sometimes clotting factors still need to be given after the procedure. Dr. Keith Roach, oregonlive, 22 Dec. 2021 In 2019, Will Smith filmed his own colonoscopy when doctors found a precancerous polyp and shared the results in a 17-minute long video on YouTube. Stephanie Wenger, PEOPLE.com, 21 Dec. 2021 In 2010, this guest host underwent a colonoscopy for TV that revealed a potentially cancer-causing adenomatous polyp. Beth Decarbo, WSJ, 11 Dec. 2021 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'polyp.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of polyp

1742, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for polyp

French polype octopus, nasal polyp, from Old French polipe, from Latin polypus, from Greek polypous, from poly- + pous foot — more at foot

Learn More About polyp

Statistics for polyp

Last Updated

12 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Polyp.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/polyp. Accessed 2 Jul. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for polyp


pol·​yp | \ ˈpä-ləp How to pronounce polyp (audio) \

Kids Definition of polyp

: a small sea animal (as a coral) having a tubelike body closed and attached to something (as a rock) at one end and opening at the other with a mouth surrounded by tentacles


pol·​yp | \ ˈpäl-əp How to pronounce polyp (audio) \

Medical Definition of polyp

: a projecting mass of swollen and hypertrophied or tumorous membrane (as in the nasal cavity or the intestine)

called also polypus

More from Merriam-Webster on polyp

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for polyp

Britannica English: Translation of polyp for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about polyp


Test Your Vocabulary

Which Word Does Not Belong?

  • one green toy robot amidst many red toy robots
  • Which of these words does not mean "nonsense"?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!