Last weekend I ended up in ER with severe stomach pain that shooted up my shoulders. I've had should pain (like a pinched nerve) for years, but the abdominal pain was new. After many tests, they found that I had a pelvic mass. The GYN on call was going to remove it, but because it was large she referred me to a Onc/Gyn. I saw him this week and he said I have a complex cyst that is on my ovary, or they think its on my ovary. He has no idea if it's benign or cancer and won't know until he surgically removes it in 3 weeks. He did say there was some fluid in my abdomen and he was concerned about my shoulder pain, but when he felt the cyst, he said it was soft and I guess he was expecting it to be hard. Of course I'm very concerned. I just had a yearly exam two months ago and my Dr. didn't mention feeling anything. I had a hysterectomy about 7 years ago due to a huge fibroid. From what I'm reading on these site, most of these turn out to be benign and I've had no symptoms that are listed for cancer. So, my questions are this:
What are the odds it might be cancer?
Would a Dr. wait three weeks for surgery if he was concerned it was cancer?
Can a complex cyst rupture, but still stay large?
Can a complex cyst rupture a little and would that fluid cause the abdominal pain?
If it is cancer, does a large cyst mean its advanced?
I was fine after Sunday, just a little tender and sore from the pain and how tense I was.
I'm very nervous, but after reading posts on this forum, I do feel a little better.
I did call another hospital and to made an appointment with a different GYN/ONC just to see if I can get in earlier for surgery. Hopefully that will be the case. The worry and stress is making me not eat and just want to sleep all the time. Any encouragement is really appreciated.
Complex cysts are confusing even to the doctors, so they act faster to remove them rather than watch them, especially if they are large. Ovarian cancer is still a rare disease, so the odds are in your favor. Unfortunately, surgery is still the best treatment, even when benign, and the gyn/onc is the best surgeon. If in the rare instance a complex cyst is harboring cancer, the gyn/onc will do all the correct surgical intervention to get you to a cure. You do not always get that with the other gyn surgeons (in fact, some can seriously mess up, rupture a cyst in surgery, and spread the disease instead). If he were that worried, your surgery would have been in days, not weeks.
Cysts can leak fluid, and any fluid can cause pain and swelling while the body works to absorb it. Yes, they can leak and still remain large. Complex cysts have some solid parts to them (or they would not be called complex), but can still have a large fluid element to them, too.
I know how terrifying this is, but it is probably benign. Size does not mean anything. If it were cancer, it would have been so from the beginning when it was small. But that does not mean ignore it, either. You will feel a lot better, mentally and physically, when it is removed.
I went in today for a second opinion (and to see if I could get an earlier surgery date) with another Gyn/Onc. It went much better. She was more sympathetic with me and although she can't say for sure whether its benign or not, she did tell me that "it is more probable that it is benign" so I guess that is good news. She did an exam and said the cyst seems to be more in the middle of my pelvic area and higher up more moveable instead of being down low and kind of in a corner (if that makes any sense). She also said my CAT scan from the week before didn't show any lesions on my abdomen. My CA125 was really high, but she wasn't to concerned about that. She said if I was 60 years old with this cyst and a high CA125, she would be more concerned.
With the other Dr. I would have to wait over 3 weeks for surgery. With her, I might get in this Friday. I was happy about that.
I left there feeling like she didn't think it was cancer, but I know there is know way of knowing for sure. I still think the cyst I have ruptured which caused all the pain and I think the cyst has been there for a while because I have had a slight pinching feeling in my left ovary and my shoulder off and on for a few years now.
The one thing I have noticed is that since this all happened, I've have more cramping in my pelvic area and I'm really tired so I'm wondering if that is a symptom of a large cyst? I guess if it suddenly decided to grow, it would make sense, but I've always been a person who had cramping after a pelvic exam and I've had 2 in the last week.
I do have a few questions;
Is it normal to feel tired and kind of crampy or pressure in my pelvic area? I didn't feel this way until this whole thing happened.
Which cysts would cause a pinching feeling in ovary and shoulder?
Can a cyst latch on to both ovaries? (the Dr. thought she felt a really small moble cyst on my right ovary, but wasn't sure is the large one just latched on or something).
She is taking out both of my ovaries. What should I expect?
I'm still very anxious and probably won't feel 100% until I know for sure. I left the office today feeling confident and now I'm anxious again. Is that normal? I did ask the Dr. if she gets a lot of women who come in with this same thing and she said yes.
How old are you? I also had both ovaries removed and my story is in my profile. The doctor should have answered some of your additional questions, especially life after ovaries.
As for the cramping, local and distant pains, any kind of cyst can cause this. It seems that once you know about the cyst, though, you become much more aware of both the strong and the subtle symptoms.
Keep us updated. Best wishes for a great outcome once you do have the surgery.
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