Ovarian Cysts

What are Ovarian Cysts?

Ovarian cysts are collections of fluid that form on the surface of a woman's ovary. Ovarian cysts are very common, and most resolve on their own without treatment.

Symptoms

Ovarian cysts do not always cause symptoms. When they do, the symptoms can include loss of appetite, nausea, weight gain, frequent urination, breast tenderness or a feeling of heaviness in the abdomen. They may also cause pain, particularly pelvic pain shortly before or after a period, during intercourse or during bowel movements.

Call the doctor right away if your pain is accompanied by fever or vomiting, if your abdominal pain is sudden and severe, or if you have cold, clammy skin, lightheadedness or rapid breathing, as these are all signs of a medical emergency.

Types of Ovarian Cysts

Ovarian cysts are typically classified into various types based on their sources and causes. Functional cysts, for example, form during ovulation. Dermoid cysts are present since birth and are unusual in that they may contain human tissue, teeth or hair. Endometriomas develop when uterine endometrial cells attach to an ovary and form a growth.

Ovarian Cyst Treatment Options

The most common treatment option for ovarian cysts is simply to wait and see. Since most cysts are not harmful and they tend to go away on their own within a few cycles, more invasive measures are generally not needed. Alternately, some doctors will prescribe birth control pill, which can inhibit the growth and formation of new, functional ovarian cysts.

If these less invasive treatment methods do not prove effective, more invasive measures will be needed, including surgery.

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Women's Health Care of Warren