Ovarian Cysts

Do you have ovarian cysts? These cysts are usually inside the ovary; they vary in size, and are sacs that filled with fluid. A follicular cyst is the most common type which results from the growth of a follicle. Normally, follicular cysts dissolve on their own.

Ins and Outs of Ovarian Cysts

• They are sac-like structures that fluid-filled

• There are a multitude of reasons why they form

• They are painful

• They are usually diagnosed by an ultrasound

• Treatment can be as simple as observation and as radical as surgery

Most women never even know that they have a cyst they come and go without detection. But the most common symptom of cyst is pain in the stomach or pelvis. The pain can be the result of the cyst rupturing or growing and stretching, bleeding, or the twisting of the cyst around its supply of blood.

Diagnosis

The best way to detect an ovarian cyst is by a test called an ultrasound. It is painless, a probe is attached to video monitoring machine, and sound waves produce an image of the structures within the body. Your doctor will be able to see the cyst and determine what course of treatment should be taken.

If a cyst looks like it's entirely a sac of fluid on the ultrasound then it is indicative of being benign, however if a cyst is a solid tissue mass it has a greater chance of being ovarian cancer.

A woman under 40 rarely has ovarian cancer. A cyst has a greater chance of being cancerous in women over 40. A blood test called a CA-125 can be used as a marker for ovarian cancer, it should be noted that it does not always represent ovarian cancer.

Treatment

If a woman can still have children and has a follicular cyst, the doctor will usually observe it for a few menstrual cycles because cysts are common, and ovarian cancer is rare in this age group. The main tool that determines treatment is an ultrasound. Treatment can consist of observation, it can include blood tests to determine if cancer is evident, or it the cyst can be removed laparoscopically or if necessary by a laparotomy if the cyst is causing severe pain without any signs of relief or if the there is cause for suspicion. Once the growth has been removed, it will be sent to a pathologist who will examine the tissue and give a final diagnosis for the cyst that's been removed.

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