An ovarian cyst is a collection of fluid that is surrounded by a thin wall within an ovary. Ovarian cysts are incredibly common, especially among pre-menopausal women. Almost fifteen percent of post-menopausal women have ovarian cysts. Most of these women don’t even realize they have them. Cysts can range in size from the size of a pea to the size of an orange. A simple cyst is one chamber containing fluid. If a cyst has walls or chambers on the inside, though, it’s called a septated ovarian cyst—which also means it’s classified as complex rather than simple. While most ovarian cysts will decrease in size after a few weeks without any medical treatment, they can become malignant in some cases.
Causes of a Malignant Septated Ovarian Cyst
There are a few reasons a septated cyst could become malignant. Often the cause is related to the walls covering the sac. If the walls are thick, the cyst is more likely to turn harmful. While a simple cyst usually develops as a result of your body malfunctioning during ovulation, a complex cyst can accompany a disorder like PCOS or endometriosis. A complex cyst might also be caused by hormonal imbalance or other issue.
If your cyst is malignant, you might have symptoms such as intense abdominal pain, especially surrounding your menstrual cycle or during intercourse; abnormal vaginal bleeding; or an irregular menstrual cycle. If you experience one or more of these symptoms, contact your doctor.
Your doctor will likely perform an ultrasound to look for any cysts. If she finds a cyst, she’ll measure its size exactly and determine whether it is complex or simple.
Treating a Septated Ovarian Cyst
If your doctor identifies a complex cyst, she might advise immediate surgery. An ovarian cystectomy aims to simply remove the cyst and save the ovary. An ovary that undergoes surgery, however, is likely to develop painful bonds that might cause discomfort during intercourse and even fertility in some cases.
If one of the ovaries has been severely damaged by the cyst, though, a hysterectomy and removal of the affected ovary might be necessary. This procedure is only recommended for certain types of cyst, and only if the patient is within a definite age range.
Outside of the doctor’s office, you might want to try a more holistic approach to treating a septated ovarian cyst—the surgical procedures serve to interrupt the development of a cyst and keep things under control, so they don’t completely get rid of the problem. Focus on including whole foods in your diet and getting yourself to a healthy weight. You can also supplement your diet and exercise with herbs and vitamins designed specifically for women’s health.
Adam enjoys writing about health and technology advances and works with Walnut Hill OBGYN – for those looking for the best gynecologist inDallas, contact them with any questions.