Complex Ovarian Cysts Causes and Treatments

Complex ovarian cysts are very rare but they can cause many serious problems and complications, including emotional isolation because of the condition. To manage this condition in the ovary, you need to understand what it is and how it affects you.

The ovary is an organ that is located on both sides of the uterus. It resembles the size and shape of an almond and is responsible for releasing an egg every month and for producing the sex hormones, estrogen and progesterone. An ovarian cyst is a sac or pouch filled with fluid or semi-liquid material found on the surface or inside an ovary.

What is Complex Ovarian Cyst?

An ovarian cyst occurs commonly in women during the childbearing years, the period from puberty to menopause. It is referred to as a functional cyst and is usually formed as part of the menstrual cycle and therefore occurs less commonly after menopause. A woman can have one cyst or many cysts and she may not be aware of it. In most cases it is harmless and does not affect a woman's ability to get pregnant. Ovarian cysts usually disappear even without treatment.

An ovarian cyst can also contain both fluid and solid material, and this is known as complex cyst. It occur less frequently and are not related to the normal menstrual cycle. These are generally harmless (benign). There are three types of complex ovarian cysts: dermoid cysts, cystadenomas, and endometriomas.

Patients with ovarian cysts are often concerned about malignancy. Complex ovarian cysts are generally benign. The risk of malignancy is generally higher among postmenopausal women, occurring in 0.3% of cases. It has been reported that a malignant change occurs in small percentage of women with dermoid cyst and endometrioma. Cystadenoma has not been reported to become malignant.

Causes of Complex Ovarian Cyst

The cause or causes have not been identified. There are several risk factors known to be associated with its formation:

Symptoms of Complex Ovarian Cyst

A cyst does often not present with any symptom. If symptoms occur, the most common complaint is pain or discomfort in the lower part of the abdomen. The pain is often due to a very large cyst. Pain may also be due to bleeding, rupture, or torsion of the cyst, being bumped during sexual intercourse, or when the blood supply to the ovary is interrupted.

The pain of a large cyst is described as a dull, heavy sensation while rupture or torsion is associated with sudden, severe, and sharp pain. Pain is also present before and after the menstrual period and during intercourse and bowel movement. There may be a feeling of fullness or bloating in the abdomen. Symptoms similar to pregnancy, such as nausea, vomiting, and breast tenderness may occur and menstruation may become irregular. A large cyst may also press on the bladder and cause increased frequency of urination.

Diagnosis of Complex Ovarian Cyst

Treatment for Complex Ovarian Cyst

The management of ovarian cysts requires a gynecologist, a specialist trained in diseases of a woman's reproductive organs. Treatment will depend on the age of the patient, type and size of the cyst, presence or absence of symptoms, and whether the patient has had menopause. The doctor may recommend watchful waiting, use of birth control pills, or surgery.

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