Ovarian cysts commonly occur in women, where they often naturally go away without causing problems. In some cases, however, they continue growing, causing pelvic pain and bloating. Victoria Mills, DO, at Mills Obstetrics & Gynecology has extensive experience diagnosing ovarian cysts then providing customized treatment to relieve painful symptoms. If you have questions about pelvic pain or need to schedule an appointment, call the office in Oklahoma City or use the online booking feature.
An ovarian cyst is a fluid-filled sac that usually forms inside your ovaries but may develop on the outer surface. You can have cysts in one or both ovaries.
The most common type of ovarian cyst, called a functional cyst, occurs during your menstrual cycle. Functional cysts develop when follicles inside your ovary continue to grow rather than break down after ovulation (release of an egg). This type of ovarian cyst shrinks and goes away within a few menstrual cycles.
You can also develop ovarian cysts that aren’t related to your menstrual cycle, such as:
It’s important to know that ovarian cysts are rarely cancerous, although they can lead to uncomfortable symptoms.
When your cysts are small, you may not have any symptoms. As they grow larger, you’ll begin to experience:
When a cyst gets too large, it can rupture, causing sudden severe abdominal pain. If you have severe pain, or pain with a fever, call Dr. Mills right away or seek emergency medical care. A ruptured ovarian cyst can cause serious internal bleeding.
Having ovarian cysts does not mean you have polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). The two conditions may both cause cysts, but they’re not related.
Women with PCOS produce more androgens (male hormones) than normal, affecting their ovaries and causing symptoms such as ovarian cysts and irregular or absent menstrual periods.
If you don’t have symptoms or your pain is mild, Dr. Mills may monitor your cysts to see whether they grow or shrink. For women with uncomfortable symptoms, she may prescribe medications that prevent future cysts from forming, but medications won’t affect existing cysts.
You may need surgery to remove ovarian cysts when they’re large or painful. Dr. Mills performs a minimally invasive cystectomy, which allows her to remove the cysts using specialized instruments inserted through a few small incisions.
If you develop pelvic or menstrual pain, call Mills Obstetrics & Gynecology or book an appointment online.