Ovarian cysts are common in many women, and while most won’t cause any major issues, it’s important to be aware of the frequent signs and symptoms. If you have any questions or concerns, it is a good idea to schedule an appointment with your gynecologist in order to get your questions answered and ensure your peace of mind.
What are ovarian cysts?
Women have two ovaries that are approximately the size of an almond, found on either side of the uterus. Ovarian cysts are sacs filled with fluid that are found in an ovary or growing on its surface.
Plenty of women have ovarian cysts at some point in their lives. Most ovarian cysts are harmless and don’t cause pain or discomfort. The majority of ovarian cysts disappear without any need for treatment within several months.
However, some ovarian cysts, particularly those that might have ruptured, can result in serious symptoms and health hazards. Make sure that you are taking care of your health by attending regular pelvic exams and educating yourself on symptoms that may require a visit to your provider.
While smaller, less harmful cysts won’t cause symptoms and generally disappear on their own, look out for the following symptoms that might indicate you have a larger ovarian cyst:
- Painful intercourse
- Pain in the lower back/thighs
- Tenderness in the breasts
- Pelvic pain before or during the menstrual cycle
- Nausea and vomiting
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, particularly if they interfere with your daily life, it’s time to visit your gynecologist who can advise on the next steps.
Sometimes complications may arise from ovarian cysts. Make sure you seek urgent medical care if you develop any of these severe symptoms:
- Faintness/ dizziness
- Sharp pelvic pain
- Rapid breathing
However, before you get worried about developing a harmful ovarian cyst, it’s a good idea to understand them a bit more and why they occur.