Ovarian cysts are very common in women. Every month that a woman has a period and ovulates she is at risk for developing a cyst. Simply, a cyst is a fluid filled pocket that replaces where the egg leaves the ovary. Sometimes the cyst is filled with fluid, blood, or tissue; the majority of cysts are not cancerous. Many women have ovarian cyst and are unaware of their presence, it is when the cyst becomes too large or twists that pain occurs and a woman knows something is wrong.
Ovarian cysts are diagnosed by clinical symptoms, exam, and ultrasound done by your provider. Depending on the size of the cyst there are multiple treatment options. Some options are continued monitoring in the future by repeat ultrasound or surgery if the cyst is very large. Birth control can be used to prevent future cyst growth; it will not make current cysts disappear.
If you are having unexplained pelvic discomfort, or think that you may have an ovarian cyst it is very important to mention it your doctor. If you develop pelvic pain is it very important that you call your doctor immediately, or go to the emergency room to be evaluated. We at Virginia Obstetrics and Gynecology are happy to help you monitor or prevent ovarian cysts if you are affected by them, please call (703)858-5599 with any questions or concerns.