]I was wondering if anyone can relate. I recently went to my gyn because I was experiencing lower abdominal pain....she told me I have an ovarian cyst that had ruptured (she says this is a common occurance among women of child bearing age, I am 27). It has now been at least a month and still feels uncomfortable (not strong pain, but feels like a dull pain around ovary area or lower abdomin and seems to come and go, but usually there). I am getting a bit worried it may be something else? maybe an infection or something? I have no idea how long it's supposed to last. I tried looking online and found nothing on how long it can last...
I have never had any issues as far as this stuff goes and she had me go on birth control, which I am going to stop taking because I don't like the side effect it has on me of occasional shortness of breath (I would like to start riding my bike to work and that's not helping me!).
I would appreciate any responses from anyone who has gone thru a similar situation please. Thank you
Last edited by Mercury0880; 12-10-2007 at 08:06 AM.
I can relate to your completely. THis past September an ovarian cyst on my right side ruptured in the middle of the night. Not knowing what it was (or that I was even prone to growing cysts) I stupidly waited for two days to see if my stomach would stop hurting. The initial pain was unlike anything I had ever felt, and after that wore off, the pain I had was exactly as you had described... dull, focused around the ovary and kind of puffy in the lower abdomen. Two days later I went to the campus health cente where they rushed me to the hospital thinking that I had a ruptured appendix, but I was lucky.
After a CT scan and a visit from an abdominal surgeon and a gynocologist, they determined that I had a ruptured ovarian cyst. About a pint and a half of blood and cystic fluid drained directly into my abdomen and flooded my pelvic floor (yeah gross i know). They decided to keep me overnight to run some more tests to make sure I was fit for surgery, and at the crack of dawn they wheeled me into an operating room. My surgeon removed whatever excess cystic tissue was there and suctioned the blood out of my abdomen.
I think that is where the problem lies. You most likely have blead into your abdomen, and that dull pain that you have been feeling is fallout from your ovarian cyst rupture. I'm a smaller than average person and I was able to bleed over a pint of fluid into my lower abdomen...I could only imagine how much could come from someone who is perhaps closer to average. That weight and dull pain in your stomach is probably old blood. Not sure if at this point a surgeon can help speed along your recovery, but do go back to your gyn and get a second opnion as well. Even though your body has its own ways of cleaning and healing these sorts of things, it isn't nearly as fast as a surgeon's suction tool.
Chances are your gyn didn't suggest surgery at first because most ruptured cysts don't cause such serious complications. But you and I must have had some pretty nasty cysts. As for how long it would take for a nonsurgical solution to heal you up, I can't be certain. Had I not gotten any medical treatment for my condition, I would imagine still being in pain today... you will be hurting until most of that old blood is cleared from your system. Perhaps your doc can answer that for you? If there is a medical solution, consider that option. Surgery stinks, but that pain goes away in a matter of days.
Sorry to hear you have been in pain for such a long time. Switch is right when she says that the fluid from the cyst is the thing that would cause you the pain after a rupture. Cystic fluid and/or blood are not usually supposed to be floating around in your lower abdomen and when they are they irritate the abdominal wall. Your body is supposed to be able to absorb this but if after a month you are still having discomfort, I would go see another doctor.
I am curious to know how your doctor was able to know that you had a cyst that ruptured ? Did you have an ultrasound or a CT scan which showed fluid in your cul de sac region (ie. your lower abdomen) ? I am quite sure that a simple pelvic examination will not give a physician that much information. If you did indeed have a cyst that ruptured, the main concern is infection. Do you have any other symptoms besides the pain ? such as a fever ? An infection can easily be treated with antibiotics.
At this point I think that you need to consider finding another doctor if the one you have is not concerned about your continued discomfort. A simple ultrasound will tell you if you (still) have fluid in your abdomen or even more cysts that are causing the problem. Without more information you cannot make an informed decision about medication, surgery or anything else so find a doctor who will listen and give you proper counselling.
The best of luck to you and do let us know how everything turns out.
As a matter of fact, I went to the same gyno today because I am having another bacterial infection (2nd one in the past 30 days) to get treatment. I have not had any fever or anything... I mentioned the lingering pain and she kind of just brushed it off like I need to get on birth control because I keep getting cysts every month. I find it kind of odd, because I have never had any issues like this and I don't know why all of a sudden I would have all of these cysts pop up (I never even had any sharp pain, just dull after my period up thru now). She never did an ultrasound either (do you know how much that runs without insurance?) Needless to say, I am looking for another doctor...
SHe also said I need to go to Planned Parenthood to get additional tests to find out why I am getting these infections...but I know I don't have any STD's because I have just gotten tested a few months ago.
If your doctor has never had you go for an ultrasound, then how on earth does she know that the pain you are experiencing is from a ruptured ovarian cyst ?! Do you perhaps have a history of ovarian cysts ? Lower abdominal pain can be caused by a variety of things, some of which are not even related to gynecological issues (ie. colon, bladder, appendix .. etc.. all are located in the same general vicinity and can cause similiar discomfort .. as a matter of fact, ruptured ovarian cysts are often confused with appendicitis at the ER).
A pelvic ultrasound is a simple and painless way to have more definite information. I am not sure how much it would cost where you are but here in Canada, it runs around $100.00 at a private clinic depending upon if you want an external or an intravaginal one. I believe that the intravaginal one gets a clearer picture because the bladder is not in the way, but the external is also just fine (although you have to drink three large glasses of water an hour before the test and the radiologist will press on your bladder a little .. ask them where the toilets are BEFORE you go in for the test .. the intravaginal one is done on an empty bladder and a small tube is inserted into your vagina .. both are completely painless and totally safe .. ie no radiation exposure as would be the case in a CT scan). They will be able to see the size of your ovaries and your uterus and if there are any cysts, they can tell how large they are and if they are filled with liquid / solid tissue / or both. They can also see if you have any fibroids or other growths in your uterus (fibroids are not dangerous but they can cause a lot of pain sometimes) and the thickness of your endometrial lining. So as you can see, an ultrasound is a wonderful resource to have available.
As for birth control pills, if they cause you unpleasant side effects, don't take them ! I was on Triphasil for over 20 years and started to have heavy irregular bleeding because my endometrial lining had atrophied from all of the progesterone in the pill. This is not dangerous and completely reversible once I went off it. I began to experience strange pulling sensations and pain in my lower abdomen in addition to the irregular bleeding so this is why I decided to stop. I will never know if my 7.5 cm simple cyst came about as a result of a hormone imbalance caused by the pill or if it occurred after I stopped taking it. All I know is that after stopping the pill, I became regular again and the constant pain in my lower abdomen stopped, returning only during the ovulation time of my cycle. You may also want to know that the medical profession is discovering that with the low dose pills that we have today, many women are still ovulating so there is no guarantee that you will no longer have cysts while on the pill. Contraception is generally maintained through the thin endometrial lining that the pill creates, which prevents any egg from remaining in the uterus.
If you are suffering from recurring infections, you should really get this looked into as well. Depending upon the type of infection, there is a variety of treatments available and a few things you can do to help prevent infections from coming back. Instead of only treating the infection (ie. the symptom) you should also be looking for a cause so that you can stop it from coming back. I fervently hope that you get regular pap smears .. if not, you should definitely do so as this simple routine test can save your life.
I hope I have been of some help to you. If you are finding that this doctor is ignoring your concerns, get another one. Doctors are a little bit like gloves and you have to try a few on before getting the perfect fit. Once you find the right one though, you are set for life and you have someone you can trust and rely on for your health issues.
Take care and do let us know how things turn out for you.
Thanks for all the information I am going to the doctor (general practice) today to really find out what's going on and hopefully get some blood work done. Maybe an ultrasound too because now I am also getting sharper pains that seem to be going upward towards my stomache. I am almost convinced it's some sort of infection. I will keep you posted! Again, thanks for all the info. TTYS
I finally got my CT Scan results back. No infections (thank God!) and I have a 12mm cyst, that my doc says is small...
I am guessing that my abdominal pain (seems to be getting better...gradually) was from a previous ruptured cyst. Doc says I should go on birth control and prescribed me Alesse. I am not a big fan of birth control, but I am willing try a different brand, at least for a month or 2...I personally think messing with mother nature is not good.
Does anyone know of any other treatments (holistic?) for cysts? I have read heating pads help to heal them.
The doctor should have told you that ALL women get cysts EVERY SINGLE MONTH ! This is completely normal and does not require treatment. A 12 mm "cyst" is not even a cyst technically, it is a "follicle" which contains an egg. When you ovulate the follicle will burst open and the egg will be released. After the egg is released the follicle will dissolve and disappear, until next month when more follicles will appear. At any one time, a woman may have several follicles growing and only the dominant or more mature one will release its egg. Some women can feel ovulation happening and some even have terrible mid-cycle pain because of it.
As I get older and I hope wiser, I am starting to see a growing trend for doctors to try to medicate the normal functioning of the human body, especially the female one .. (although lately they have started on older men too, in the form of testosterone supplements during andropause). In addition to trying to treat normally occurring follicular cysts in young premenopausal women, I am also thinking about older women with normal menopausal symptoms which doctors have tried to treat in the past with unopposed estrogen supplements only to discover that these same supplements increase the risk for cancer. Good news lady, no more hot flashes but I am sorry to say that you now have breast cancer ! My own doctor has already tried to "rah rah" the miracles of hormonal supplements during menopause and has told me that when I went off the pill, I could start hormonal supplements (after reading this, try to figure out what I told him). Keep in mind that I am 41 years old and have suffered no perimenopausal symptoms to speak of nor do I even know if menopausal symptoms will ever effect me to the extent that I will require treatment (it should be said that some women are unable to function due to extremely debilitating menopausal symptoms and balanced hormonal therapy does offer some relief from this).
Now here's the deal with birth control pills. Birth control pills are supposed to prevent you from ovulating (this is why they are also called antiovulants) and the theory goes that if you don't ovulate, you will therefore not get "cysts" or normal follicles that sometimes don't stop growing or refuse to dissolve on their own .. keep in mind that this is not what you have and that these true cysts are usually much larger (mine is 7.5 cm) than what you are presently experiencing. However, they are now finding that with the newer lowest dose birth control pills, women are still forming follicles and some are still developing cysts (as a matter of fact, many women on these boards developed their cysts while on the pill). The birth control pill is therefore no guarantee that you will never develop an ovarian cyst.
My own personal story may help put things in perspective for you. I was on the birth control pill for over 20 years thinking that it was perfectly safe and on my 41st birthday I began to have heavy bleeding episodes in the middle of my cycle. This scared the hell out of me and although my doctor was not worried because he said he saw this all of the time with women on prolonged birth control pill use, I certainly was as I had not seen this ANYWHERE .. I was under the impression that irregular bleeding only occurred during the first few months of pill use. As soon as I went off the pill, the irregular bleeding stopped and my uterus went back to normal. I found out that the BC pill often causes endometrial atrophy or an overthinning of the wall of your uterus. This may eventually cause the veins in the uterus to bleed more easily (a bit like hemmorhoids). Although doctors and gynecologists see this "all the time" they do not mention this anywhere on the patient insert that comes with the pill and doctors don't mention it to their patients either (!). In addition to the bleeding I was also experiencing some strange sensations (pulling and stretching and pain) around my bellybutton area and I am convinced that this is when my cyst came about. I had the same sensations when I had tried to switch to a lower dose pill a few years ago and became so scared that I immediately switched back to my regular pill (Triphasil) after I finished the third pack of new ones (Alesse) but of course without having had an ultrasound before and after stopping or changing the pill, I cannot prove anything so this will always be a theory. Even if this damned cyst that I have developed came about from my having stopped the pill, the simple act of stopping the pill after being on it may have caused my problem (ie. after my first US when we found the cyst, my doctor said that after stopping the pill a woman is often overstimulated to create larger follicles than normal and this persists for a short while until the body adjusts). My 7.5 cm simple cyst is most likely not a normal functional cyst that comes from ovulation but an abnormal serous cyst or so my gynecologist says. I am also told that since it is fluid filled and only on one side, it is most likely benign so we are keeping an eye on it. I will NEVER know if my being on the pill caused a hormonal imbalance that resulted in this cyst.
Ovarian cancer is not something I have ever dreamed I would have on my mind since long term pill use is supposed to reduce your risk of both ovarian and endometrial cancer (significantly according to the drug companies). But this is exactly the fear that I am facing at the moment and if I want to be 100% sure, I would need to have surgery to have it removed. Since the risk is extremely low that a cyst of this nature is cancerous (I have read MANY studies and medical texts over the past few months), I have decided to keep an eye on it with ultrasound rather than to go in for surgery (which also has its own risks).
Heating pads do not prevent cysts from forming although they may reduce the pain from ovulation by relaxing your pelvic muscles. Advil or Motrin or any other anti-inflammatory drug will also reduce the pain from ovulation and menstruation (actually works more effectively than say Tylenol). Other pain reduction techniques include hot baths and certain abdominal exercises. You cannot completely negate the risk of developing ovarian cysts as long as you have your ovaries in tact and your body is working normally .. you may want to keep in mind however that I have read that tubal ligation may actually increase your risk of developing cysts so think about this when you eventually decide to stop being fertile for birth control reasons. You may also be interested in knowing that women who keep their ovaries up to the age of 65 live longer than women who have them removed. This means that our ovaries are a curse and a blessing all at the same time !
Hope this has helped you to put some perspective on your decision.
I must say the female body is quite complex! It's kind of funny becaue I never had even heard of ovarian cysts (harmless ones) before a month ago! Guess I'm just not as educated about that stuff as I had thought....
Anyways, sorry to hear about your cyst and I hope it goes down in size and DISAPPEARS! Yes, I would avoid the surgery if possible, too.
I also am going to avoid the BC for a few reasons:
1. I've only had 1 ovarian cyst that I know of, who knows if it's a reoccuring problem yet?
2. Every time I take it, I feel funny
3. I'd be defying mother nature (haha)
4. I knew a girl who went on Depo Provera, and when she went off it, she was on her period for like a month staright! (No thanks!)
5. My hormones already go crazy...I don't want anymore.
I think you get the idea
BTW, thanks for your input! You are what make these boards so helpful!
It is my pleasure and I am ever so glad that I could be of help. If you keep experiencing this abdominal pain, be sure to have it checked out as it may be completely unrelated to your ovulation. Also, if possible, try to opt more for an ultrasound rather than a CT scans. Ultrasounds use sound waves to get a picture whereas CT scans are like X-rays and too many of them can be harmful to your thyroid (too much radiation can destroy your thyroid).
Have a wonderful start to the new year and take care of yourself.
Okay, the pain seems to have returned It came about 2 days before my period, which I thought was just pms. Now, I am almost done with my period and it still hurts... I will try to be patient.
Does anyone know if having a previous ovarian cyst rupture could cause a more painful period? My guess is yes, but it HAS been almost 2 months since that supposedly (meaning diagnosed with a ruptured cyst) happened.
What are the chances of it being Endo? I am scared! However, I don't have any other syptoms of endo...pain during intercourse, while urinating, bowel movements, etc...Just a painful period. Hopefully, I am just being paranoid?
I have a follow up appointment at the end of February, but I think I will just be patient a few more days until I make the move to have the appointment sooner. What do you think?
Last edited by Mercury0880; 01-09-2008 at 01:30 PM.
Sorry to hear that the pain has returned. Does it feel like menstrual cramping (ie. a dull pain below your belly button) or is it different ? Also, do you usually have pain with your periods ? The key to knowing whether or not to see a physician right away is if the pain is something new or unusual for you. Also, are your menses heavier than usual or have they perhaps lasted longer than normal ?
Cramping during your period is not unusual as I am sure you already know. Uterine fibroids can also cause pain during your period and I am not sure if they saw any of these on your CT scan (uterine fibroids are not dangerous and extremely common .. they also cause heavier bleeding). Of course the other possibility is that you have another infection. Have you had any unusual vaginal discharge that would collaborate this ?
The 12 mm cyst that came up on your CT scan looks to be a completely normal functional follicle so I do not think that this is the culprit. It is unfortunate that they did not do an ultrasound instead of a CT scan as the U/S is really the gold standard for ovarian cysts (it is actually more accurate for these kind of things than the CT but I imagine that a CT would have shown anything that was significant ...).
At any rate, see if the pain persists for a few more days and if it does, get in to see your doctor a little sooner to have it checked out. Of course if it becomes unbearable or if you begin to experience other unusual symptoms, you should definitely go in right away.
HI Estria, Thanks for your concern I am just getting more and more confused about the whole situation I think I need to stop researching symptoms online because it freaks me out...And this very well could be the root of my problem.
The cramps (yes, I normally get cramps, whoever doesn't is EXTREMELY lucky!) definitely felt different and in more places than usual, and I felt more pain in the ovary area it seems.
Other than that, flow completely normal and on time. No infection either.
As I research abdominal pain more, I am beginning to think it could possibly be depression (or endometriosis)? I am just going to be patient for now and monitor. Thanks again for your insight
Last edited by Mercury0880; 01-10-2008 at 11:15 AM.
You are completely correct about taking on-line research with a grain of salt (or perhaps a pillar). Keep in mind that if you were to do a simple search for say a "headache", you will get many hits, including brain tumours and cancer. Abdominal and pelvic pain can be so so many things, many of which are completely benign (such as menstrual cramps, gas or occasional constipation).
If your symptoms persist however, I would still see your doctor, just to be on the safe side, but don't waste your time stressing over worse case scenarios. And if you are going through a bout of depression, this is not to be taken lightly. Take this up with your doctor as well.
Hi, The pain is still there and seems to be getting worse. I started BC Pills 2 weeks ago...I am thinking it is PID or Endo, for sure. I go to the gyno in about 3 hours...I cannot wait! I will keep you updated.