Most ovarian cysts, often described as functional cysts, will have no impact on a woman's health and will disappear after a few months. However some cysts do not shrink or disappear over time and are more complex. In such instances the condition could lead to a variety of symptoms, principally extreme pain in the pelvic region. Consequently the option of ovarian cyst removal is a sensible and necessary choice.
Other factors that may lead to a decision to remove a cyst is if it is cancerous. The chances of a cyst becoming cancerous are thought to increase with age so the older a woman is the more chance that removal will be necessary.
The state of the ovarian cyst will be determined through a series of tests, including a physical examination of the abdomen and possibly X-rays or CT scans. Tests of blood and urine may also be conducted.
Surgery for ovarian cyst removal is divided into open and laparoscopic. The type of surgery is ultimately determined by the type or size of the cyst. However, if possible the wishes of the patient are also considered by the surgeon.
Laparoscopic surgery is often a preferred option because it is less invasive. This means there is less healing time required after the procedure. There is little to no long term scarring which is another issue for most people.
A small incision is made in the abdomen where the ovarian cyst is located. A thin tube or laparoscope is introduced through the incision and provides the surgeon with the vision and tools to remove the cyst.
If the cyst is large, open surgery is generally the only option. This will require general anesthesia and will be a more complicated procedure. It will take longer for the wound to heal and the patient to recover from the operation.
After surgery the only other consideration is whether the cyst is cancerous. Although this is unlikely, if it is the case then other treatment will be required. Other than that, the patient should be back to normal within a few weeks depending on the type of surgery performed.
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