What are ovarian cysts?

Ovarian cysts are fluid-filled sacs that form during ovulation on either one or both of the ovaries. In most cases, ovarian cysts do not cause symptoms and can disappear on their own without treatment. When an ovarian cyst grows rather large, rarely it may rupture or become cancerous. When cysts grow larger, they may cause pain and requires treatment. On each side of the uterus, women have two ovaries, each about the size and shape of an almond. Eggs (ova) grow and mature in the ovaries during the reproductive years and are discharged monthly. Ovarian cysts affect many women at some point in their lives. The majority of ovarian cysts cause little or no discomfort and are completely innocuous. Often, most cysts go away on their own within a few months without any therapy. Some ovarian cysts, particularly ones that have ruptured, can cause severe symptoms.

What causes ovarian cysts?

An ovarian cyst is commonly caused when the ovary responsible for releasing an egg fails to open. Ovarian cysts may also be caused by polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), which is a condition that causes many small cysts to develop on the ovaries at a time, affecting fertility.

What are the symptoms?

The symptoms associated with ovarian cysts include:

  • Abdominal bloating
  • Abdominal pressure
  • Pelvic pain
  • Painful intercourse
  • Difficulty urinating
  • Ruptured cysts may cause sudden sharp pain in the abdomen.

How can ovarian cysts be treated?

Most ovarian cysts can resolve independently and do not cause symptoms. However, larger cysts and multiple cysts caused by polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) require treatment. Oral contraceptives can prevent ovarian cysts from developing, while minimally invasive laparoscopic surgery may be needed to remove cysts (a cystectomy). For post-menopause women, a laparoscopic oophorectomy may be done to remove the ovaries.

1Can ovarian cysts burst?

Ruptured ovarian cysts are a typical component of the menstrual cycle and usually disappear on their own. Functional cysts are not only common but also normal. You may not even be aware that you have them.

2How long does it take to remove an ovarian cyst?

Ovarian cyst removal may take more than an hour to complete, depending on the number of cysts and their severity.

3How long does it take to recover from ovarian cyst removal?

Most women feel better within the first week of surgery; nevertheless, they do not lift, push, or pull any heavy objects for a few weeks. Internal healing takes four to six weeks for complete recovery.