Although ovarian cysts may not cause any signs or symptoms, pelvic pain could be the sign of a larger cyst or a more serious medical condition. Women in the La Habra, California, area trust the care they receive from Dr. Sepideh Zahedy-Kapusta of Women & Family Clinic. Dr. Zahedy is a board-certified OB/GYN with more than 20 years of experience treating women with ovarian cysts. Call or schedule an appointment online for an exam.
Ovarian cysts are sac-like structures in an ovary that are filled with fluid or a semisolid substance. Most are benign (not cancerous) and small ones often do not present any symptoms or discomfort. Most women have ovarian cysts at some point in time, and the majority of them disappear without treatment in a few months.
Although small ovarian cysts often show no signs or symptoms, larger cysts may cause discomfort or pain. Women with large ovarian cysts might experience:
Common types of ovarian cysts develop as a result of your menstrual cycle. These functional cysts, as they are called, are normal follicles within your ovaries that continue to grow beyond your monthly cycle. Theses functional cysts are usually harmless, rarely cause any discomfort or pain, and tend to disappear on their own within two or three menstrual cycles.
Other types of cysts that aren’t related to the normal function of a woman’s menstrual cycle include dermoid cysts, cystadenomas, and endometriomas. These three types of cysts can become larger over time, which may put pressure or adjacent organs. If a cyst ruptures, it can cause severe pain and internal bleeding.
If a woman’s hormones are out of balance, there’s a chance she’ll grow a bunch of small cysts on her ovaries. This condition is known as polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). The cysts aren’t harmful, but they lead to problems with the monthly cycle, make it difficult for women to become pregnant, and cause other symptoms -- such as acne, facial hair, and depression. If left untreated, PCOS can cause more serious health problems, including diabetes.
In addition to a physical exam, Dr. Zahedy may also do an ultrasound so she can get an accurate image of your ovaries to see how many cysts you have as well, as their size and location. Once she diagnoses the type of cysts or the specific condition, she discusses effective treatment options with you. If you’re concerned about ovarian cysts, call or schedule an appointment online.