PCOS- OVARIAN CYSTS

Ovarian cysts are fluid-filled sacs found in or on the ovaries that form during ovulation and are usually asymptomatic and go away on their own. They usually present to no discomfort and are harmless. But, in the rare cases, some symptoms do appear such as:

  • Abdominal pain on the side where the cyst is present.
  • Pelvic pain
  • Heaviness in the abdomen
  • Bloating
  • Pain during intercourse
  • Pain bowel movement
  • Irregular menstrual periods
  • Vaginal pain or abnormal bleeding
  • Pain while urinating
  • Nausea
  • Lower back pain

WHAT ARE THE RISKS INVOLVED?

Certain contributing factors can pose a possible risk of ovarian cysts to form such as:

  • History of previous ovarian cyst
  • Irregular menstrual cycles
  • Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
  • Endometriosis
  • Obesity
  • Early menstruation which could be earlier than 11 years of age
  • Pelvic infection

WHAT CAUSES OVARIAN CYSTS?

Most ovarian cysts known as functional cysts, appear as a result of your menstrual cycle. There are other types of ovarian cysts that are less common. There are two kinds of functional cysts:
 
 FOLLICULAR CYST

Follicles are present in the ovaries which produce hormones such as estrogen and progesterone and release an egg when you ovulate. A Follicular cyst occurs when the follicle does not release the egg and continues to grow.

CORPUS LUTEUM CYST
When the follicle releases an egg, it begins producing hormones for conception at this stage it becomes what is called Corpus Luteum. Sometimes, when fluid accumulates within the follicle causing the Corpus Luteum to grow into a cyst.

HOW ARE THESE TREATED?

Treatment may vary depending on your age, type, size and the symptoms as a result of the cyst. Based on this, we may recommend one of the following:

WAIT IT OUT
In many cases, these cysts often dissipate on their own regardless of your age. If found during a pelvic exam and an ultrasound, based on the size, our doctors may recommend either to wait it out if the size is negligible or if you may require treatment.

WAIT IT OUT

  • Our doctors may recommend pain medication to alleviate the pain. However, these do not remove the cysts but are just means to provide relief caused by the symptoms.
  • We may be prescribed hormonal birth-control pills to prevent cysts from recurring. However, these also do not remove or shrink the cysts.
SURGERY
  • We may remove the cyst if it isn’t large but continues to grow through two or three menstrual cycles or causes pain. Some cysts may be removed by the means of an ovarian cystectomy. However, in rare cases, we may suggest removing the affected ovary while leaving the other intact.
  • If the cystic mass is cancerous, we may suggest a total hysterectomy which is the removal of your uterus, fallopian tubes and ovaries. Following which you will undergo chemotherapy.
  • If cysts develop after menopause, we may recommend surgery.