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  • "Mature Women" and ovarian cysts

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    Old 04-01-2009, 06:16 AM   #1
    Kaycee41
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    "Mature Women" and ovarian cysts

    I am a 50 year old woman. I have been taking birth control pills for several years to control heavy bleeding...this is my last year to be on them per doctor. I had a sonagram last week that showed a 5 cm cyst on my ovary. The doctor said this was unusual since I am on birth control and not ovulating...same as with women who are menopausal. He sent me for a ca125 test (waiting on results). Here's my question. Has anyone had larger cysts after menopause or while on birthcontrol and the went away or at least got smaller? I go back for another sonagram in 8 weeks.

    Of course, I didn't get to talk to the doctor about the sonagram...the nurse always calls. So I asked for a copy of the sonagram. It says the cyst is a thin walled nonseptated cyst interface. Thin walled sounds good???? Anyone know what this means? Thanks!

    Last edited by Kaycee41; 04-01-2009 at 06:30 AM.

     
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    Old 04-01-2009, 12:22 PM   #2
    estria
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    Re: "Mature Women" and ovarian cysts

    Hi Kaycee,

    Yes thin walled and non septated are both good. This means that it is probably a simple fluid filled cyst, the least threatening kind of cyst.

    Menopausal women get cysts too. It is now known that up to 15% of postmenopausal women develop cysts. Many go away on their own and some remain the same.

    I am not sure why a doctor would have put you on birth control pills if you are menopausal. I have never heard of this. Usually menopausal women are put on some sort of hormone replacement therapy, not on anti-ovulants. You should know, however, that anti-ovulants nowadays are no longer strong enough to prevent women from developing ovarian follicles (ie. cysts) and that birth control is usually achieved through the thinning of the endometrial lining.

    This means that birth control pills do not necessarily prevent the development of cysts. Why heck, I was on the pill for about 20 years when they found an 8 cm simple cyst on my left ovary. Since it is still there and growing very slowly (mine is also a simple, thin walled, non septated cyst) I am having it removed by laparoscopy. Needless to say that I am no longer on the pill and I now wonder if the damned thing didn't cause the problem in the first place. Oh well, what's done is done.

    I hope this helps you. Most likely, all you have is a harmless ovarian cyst that will probably go away on its own in time. Regular ultrasounds will enable you to keep an eye on it, as I did on mine for about a year and a half.

    Take care and I hope this has helped.

    Estria

     
    Old 04-01-2009, 02:28 PM   #3
    Kaycee41
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    Re: "Mature Women" and ovarian cysts

    Thanks so much for your reply! I have no symptoms of menopause yet, but will probably start as soon as I get off the pill. I still have periods, but they have been light since starting the birth control pill and much more regular. They were always very heavy before. I have a lot going on in my life right now, and it would be a really bad time to have surgery. Maybe I can be like you and hold off for a while even if the cyst doesn't go away.

     
    Old 04-01-2009, 04:29 PM   #4
    estria
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    Re: "Mature Women" and ovarian cysts

    Hi,

    In this case, you are not in menopause and cysts are much more likely to occur.

    Withdrawal bleeding while on the pill is not actually a period. It is simply bleeding due to the withdrawal of the hormones during the one week placebo pill or lack of pills. If it is any consolation, I used to have very heavy painful periods before I went on the pill. After about 20 years of being on oral contraceptives, I went off them and my periods (which are now real periods) are still very light and only a few days in length. This is one of the fringe benefits of being on the pill (at least there are some of these) and one of the reasons why the pill reduces your risk of uterine cancer.

    If your cyst is only 5 cms, a simple cyst, thin walled, on only one ovary and with no septations AND you are not confirmed menopausal, then the usual treatment for this is to do a follow up ultrasound in three to six months to see if the cyst has resolved on its own. Most often this is what happens so take heart in this.

    Hope this helps and all the best.

    Estria

     
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