Why Do I Have an Ovarian Cyst?
The word cyst is an ugly word, but they’re really usually nothing to worry about. This even includes ovarian cysts. An ovarian cyst is a fluid-filled sac that forms in the ovaries. Most don’t need any attention but some can be painful and need attention from the team at Women’s Health Medical Group.
What causes ovarian cysts to form?
Ovarian cysts are much more prevalent during a woman’s childbearing years. Every month during ovulation the ovaries produce eggs in tiny sacs that are called follicles. The egg is then released and the sac dissolves turning into corpus luteum, which produces hormones. Sometimes the sac does not dissolve. If this happens a “functional” cyst forms. These are very common and usually disappear in a few months but they can be painful. They very rarely develop into a cancerous growth.
Symptoms with other ovarian cysts
At other times, the egg doesn’t release. Cysts that develop in these cases can be large and quite painful. These are common symptoms:
- Pelvic pain
- Abnormal bleeding
- Pressure, swelling, or abdominal pain
- Pain during sex
- Weight gain
Other kinds of ovarian cysts
- Polycystic — These cysts form when the follicles fail to open.
- Endometriosis — In women with endometriosis, tissue from the lining of the uterus grows in other areas of the body, including the ovaries. These cysts can be very painful and can impact a woman’s fertility.
- Cystadenomas — Often fluid-filled, these cysts form out of cells on the surface of the ovaries.
- Dermoid — This type of cyst contains tissue similar to that found in other parts of the body, including skin, hair, and teeth.
Diagnosis and treatment
Most ovarian growths are benign, but a small number can be cancerous. That’s why it’s important to have any growths checked. At Women’s Health Medical, we use pelvic exams, ultrasounds, and other imaging tools to diagnose ovarian cysts. We also screen hormone levels to look for clues.
If surgery is required, we use laparoscopy. This utilizes a thin, light-tipped device that is inserted into your abdomen. If the tumor is identified as cancerous we do not perform the surgery, instead referring the patient to a gynecologic oncologist.
If you have any of the above symptoms, you may have an ovarian cyst. Call us at 817-346-5336 and let’s see what’s going on.