Ovarian Cysts & Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
The physicians working at Lowcountry OB/GYN diagnose and treat ovarian cysts and polycystic ovarian syndrome. We encourage you to prioritize your health with regular checkups so any changes in your body can be monitored and conditions such as these can be detected as early as possible.
Understanding Ovarian Cysts
The ovaries are an important part of the female reproductive system located on each side of the uterus. They are responsible for releasing eggs during the monthly menstrual cycle. At some point, most women may develop one or more cysts, which are fluid-filled sacs in or on the ovaries.
In most cases, ovarian cysts are benign and will go away on their own. These are referred to as functional cysts and they do not require treatment. They usually do not cause pain or other symptoms unless the cyst grows or if there are multiple cysts. When symptoms do occur, they include:
- Painful Intercourse
- Pain in the Pelvis during Menstruation
- Lower Back Pain
- Thigh Pain
- Painful Bowel Movements
A ruptured cyst or another condition called ovarian torsion can cause:
- Sharp Pelvic Pain
- Rapid Breathing
If you experience any of these symptoms, seek immediate medical attention.
Treatment for Ovarian Cysts
When determining the best treatment plan, we consider your age, the size of your cyst or cysts, as well as the symptoms you are experiencing. Treatment options include:
- Monitoring – The cyst may go away on its own or it may change in size. If it grows, next steps will be determined.
- Medication – Hormonal birth control can help prevent cysts from recurring.
- Surgery – Removal may be necessary if the cyst grows, does not go away, or is not a functional cyst.
Understanding Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
While ovarian cysts and polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) share many of the same symptoms, they are not the same condition. You can have multiple ovarian cysts without having PCOS.
PCOS is a hormone imbalance characterized by the production of higher amounts of male hormones. This causes irregular menstrual periods, facial hair growth, obesity, and acne. Maintaining a healthy weight can have a positive impact on PCOS symptoms. Treatment will involve medications to help regulate your period, such as hormonal birth control pills. We will discuss all of your options with you and work to develop an effective treatment plan individualized to your specific needs.
Schedule Your Appointment
It is important to schedule regular pelvic exams to be aware of any changes in your ovaries. This ensures that any potential complications can be diagnosed as soon as possible so they can be monitored and treated effectively. Contact our office to schedule an appointment with a member of our caring medical team. We combine skill with compassion to deliver the gynecological care you require in a welcoming environment.