A mother of three gets a 20-pound cyst removed after living in pain and discomfort for five years. What are ovarian cysts?
20-Pound Cyst ‘Growth Spurt’
Five years ago, 32-year-old mother of three Ashley Walden went to the doctor when she had felt pain in her abdomen and was diagnosed with a benign ovarian cyst. She then gained weight and the pain even got worse. Within six months, Walden appeared as though she was six months pregnant but every pregnancy test she took came back negative.
It was when the pain got so bad that she had to go to the emergency room that doctors told her that the cyst had a “growth spurt” and had grown much larger in just six months. At the Vanderbilt Center for Women’s Health at NorthCrest Medical Center, Dr. Shana Dowell, an OB/GYN, told Walden that she had to get surgery right away, but she canceled her appointments twice because of her nerves. For the last five years, Walden lived with the pain and discomfort brought about by the massive cyst.
Just last week, Dr. Dowell was finally able to remove Walden’s massive ovarian cyst that turned out to be 20 pounds. Walden evidently had trouble even just walking down the hallway, and she expressed her gratitude to Dr. Dowell for finally removing the massive cyst that caused her pain for years.
In hindsight, Walden wished that she had the cyst removed sooner, and she encourages other women to also make their health a top priority. Similarly, Dr. Dowell also encourages women to get regular exams and to talk to their doctors immediately should they have any concerns.
Ovarian cysts are fluid-filled pockets or sacs in the ovary or on its surface. These ovarian growths are often benign or non-cancerous, and many women develop ovarian cysts at some point in their lives. Often, they present little to no symptoms and may even disappear on their own in a few months, but others may require treatment or even surgery.
It is particularly hazardous to health if the cyst ruptures, which is why it is important to get regular check-ups and pelvic checks to spot potentially serious health problems. In particular, large ovarian cysts may cause bloating, pelvic pain, and fullness or heaviness in the abdomen.
If one experiences sudden, severe abdominal or pelvic pain, vomiting and fever, as well as symptoms of shock such as rapid breathing, cold and clammy skin, and light-headedness or weakness, it is important to see a doctor right away.
There is no known way to prevent ovarian cysts, which is why it is important to be observant of one’s menstrual cycles and to take note of any strange changes that may be of concern, especially if it persists for more than a few months.