Gardner’s syndrome is a disorder associated with the colon. With this type of colon disorder, there are a number of polyps found in the organ, along with tumors that develop overtime. The origins of this type of condition are understood to be genetic in nature, and can increase the potential for the development of colon cancer.
The health condition is named after Eldon J. Gardner, a professor who first identified and defined the syndrome in 1951. While research has uncovered more information about Gardner’s Syndrome since then, the basics of what Gardner first presented still hold true. Many of the gains in knowledge about this type of colon disorder have come about as modern medicine has come to understand the role genetics play in the transmission of diseases and health issues from one generation to the next.
There are several signs and symptoms that may indicate the presence of Gardner’s Syndrome. The teeth often serve as one of the more common of all Gardner’s Syndrome symptoms. When the condition is present, there may be a number of impacted teeth, as well as the presence of osteomas in the area of the jaw.
Another of the most common symptoms of Gardner’s Syndrome is inflammation in the colon that is manifested by difficulty in eliminating waste, a sense of feeling full for long periods of time, and the development of a recurring low grade temperature. As the polyps and tumors begin to enlarge, the symptoms will become more pronounced. If left untreated, the condition can cause damage to the bowels in general, as well as set the stage for the spread of tumors to other parts of the body.
Obtaining a diagnosis for Gardner’s Syndrome usually involves tests that make it possible to assess the condition of the colon. Once the presence of the polyps and tumors are discovered, it is often necessary to use some type of surgery to secure samples and test them to see if they are benign or malignant. Today, the samples can often be secured using minimally invasive techniques. Depending on the findings, the physician may choose to monitor the condition for a time, or schedule surgery to remove the tumors and polyps before they can begin to impact other organs.
Today, Gardner’s Syndrome is not always viewed as a distinct condition. More often, the syndrome is considered to be a variant form of a condition known as familial adenomatous polyposis or FAP. Still, the condition has the potential to lead to the development of cancer in the colon and other areas of the body, a fact that leads some health care professionals to still classify the syndrome as a separate health ailment.