Ovarian cysts are very common in women. By definition they are fluid filled sacs that are in the ovary. For example, whenever a woman ovulates she forms a cyst on or in one of her ovaries. Most cysts are benign or are not cancerous and do not cause pain. Less than 5% of the time they can cause pain. They can be felt on pelvic exam but most are diagnosed by ultrasound.
Ovarian cysts most often occur with each ovulation. This is when an egg in the ovary is being prepared to ovulate and be released into the fallopian tube. This occurs every month in most women. When pregnancy does not occur the cyst opens and drains or ruptures and a woman has her period. The whole cycle starts over again the next month.
Occasionally the ovulation cyst does not rupture or the hormones are thrown off or abnormal signals occur and the cyst does not rupture and drain. This can persist and even grow. Sometimes the cysts do not disturb the normal menstrual cycle and the woman does not know she has a cyst. Most of the time it goes away on its own with no pain or problems occurring.
If you have symptoms such as bloating, needing to urinate more often, pelvic pressure or pain, or abnormal (unusual) vaginal bleeding; or if you think you have a cyst, make an appointment to see Dr. Webb. These can be signs of a cyst or other serious problem.
Treatments Options for Ovarian Cysts