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Posted by Becky Mitchell on April 05, 2000 at 21:04:46:

Dear Doctor's Bag,
I am a 18 year old college student who has had a history of ovarian cysts over the past 3 years. Even since February I have been having side pain. There has been only one cyst that has been seen by ultrasound, the other pain has been unexplained (there has been nothing in my side). The pain has been cyclical and usually during mid-cycle. This pain is not very cycle, and only lasts for a few days. Yet this past year it has been much longer in duration. Every time the pain has lasted longer than a week, I have sought medical attention.
I was born without my right kidney and my right ovary is elongated and up above my hip bone. The right horn of my uterus is also not present (from birth). I was a fertility drug baby that was a breech baby born 6 weeks early. I am also a twin. In February of 1998 I had a laparoscopy and an appendectomy that resulted in no helpful conclusion. There were small traces of endometriosis and no trace of a cyst or fluid in my abdominal cavity.
Could you please tell me what "a very hard nodule on the right ovary" (as stated in my medical record) could mean!? That is the one thing in reading my surgery report that I do not understand. I have never had a problem with my spleen, gallbladder, or pancreas. I did have a kidney infection when I was 8 and there was right lower back pain; the right side pain was never explained as my only kidney is on the left. This CAT was also how the doctors discovered I had no right kidney (I was 8 for this test as well). I also had a cystoscopy under general anesthetic and it was discovered that there was no right ureter either. My left kidney has compensated by being larger than normal from birth. Other than this one infection, I have never had problems with the left kidney.
I have been on birth control to prevent ovulation for the past 3 years. I went to a pain clinic to try to alleviate the unexplained pain and reflexology helped for a time. It has since stopped working. Normal pain medicines do not touch my side pain and only recently migraine medicine (butalbital) has improved the level of pain, although it is not totally gone. Since I am at school, I have not been able to take much of this medicine because it makes me very sleepy. Since March 31st I have also been on 25mgs of lamotrigine which has made me slightly nauseous and causes headaches but has done little for my side pain. This dose is going to be doubled on April 7th. Do you know much about these medicines? Would you recommend something else?
This past February the pain started again and has been constant ever since. It is a constant dull, sometimes sharp pain that has no cycle or other symptoms that go with it at this time. I had an EEG on the 24th of March and the results were normal. Dr. Andrew Herzog of the neurology department at the Harvard Vanguard center in Kenmore in Boston was the one to read the results. His thoughts were that the pain could be an abdominal migraine or some form of seizure.
I am wondering if there are any other possibilities as to what could be causing my pain or what methods there are to make it less.
Becky Mitchell

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