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Symptoms of a dermoid cyst
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Symptoms of a dermoid cyst

I went for my annual physical at the end of August, and my doctor felt a lump in my abdomen. He sent me for an ultrasound, in which they thought it was a urachal cyst, but the image was not very clear, so I was sent for an MRI. After the MRI, I was told I most likely had a omental or mesenteric cyst. I scheduled a consultation with a surgeon, and after reviewing my MRI screens, he told me that he thinks it is a large dermoid cyst (12.1 x 9.9 x 15.1). So as you can see, I have been in a rather confused state for these past few months. I have started to experience sharp pains in my abdomen that randomly occur, usually for about 1-2 min, every 15-20 minutes for about 2-5 hours. The only position to help ease the pain is for me to go on the floor on my hands and knees with my back arched (like a cat), which is rather inconvenient considering I am a full time university student with most my time spent in class or at the library. Every time that I experience the pain, I am forced to leave campus because the pain is so unbearable. The pain is also associated with vomiting, and sometime blood in my stool. I usually take some tylenol or advil, but neither really seem to help. I also believe that it is growing quite quickly, because I had no idea it even existed until my doctor told me in late August, and now it sometime looks as though I am 4 months pregnant. Do all these symptoms sound normal for a dermoid cyst? Do you think that it could be twisting or rupturing and this is why I am experiencing pain? I am only 19, and wish to have children in the future, but I am scared that since this mass is so large, they will need to remove my ovary as well. Also, my surgeon told me I will have to have open surgery; I am assuming this is because it is too large to remove laprascopically. How long do you think I will need to take off school? If anyone has answers to any of these questions, that would help me greatly.
Thanks!
Tags: Pain, Cyst, scared, help, symptom
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Avatar_f_tn
Hello, let me start by saying how sorry I am you are also dealing with this, you have come to the right place though, there are so many helpful caring ladies on here.
I also had a dermoid cyst (11cm). Removed via laparotomy in '05 while 4mths pregnant, they managed to save the ovary.  
Do you have a surgery date set yet?  It seems to me, for having found it to be of that size in August surgery should have been done by now.   In my situation, I do know the dermoid grew quickly, my first TVUS showed the size around 3cm then less than 6mths later it was 11cms.  Risk of rupture and twisting is greater the larger the cyst, and it could be the very cause of the pain you are experiencing.  I myself have not experienced vomiting or blood in the stool and I think with that, accompanied with the  pain you describe is reason enough to go to emerg.      They will try their best to save your ovary especially with but should they need to take it you only need one to get pregnant.    You should expect that recovery will take from 4-6wks. I took the full 6wks off work as a health care aide and I'm glad I did.  I hope you are able to get this taken care of soon.  Take care and keep us posted

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Avatar_n_tn
Thank you so much for your quick response. I think it has taken so long, because I only saw my regular doctor in August, and I got the ultrasound as well as the MRI done the following week. But then, I had to go to Ontario which is where I attend school, (I am from Calgary, Alberta originally) and so I had my MRI screens faxed over, and the clinic at the university set me up with a consultation with a surgeon. Unfortunately i had to wait 2 1/2 months for that consultation. Now that I have seen the surgeon though (just last week), hopefully this process will start to speed up. So do you think that I will require a full 6 weeks off school? Will I be able to just go to class and sit there, or do you think I will be in too much pain after the surgery. I was hoping to only take 2 weeks off if possible, but as the sounds of it, like you said, most people took 4-6 weeks off. Also, I am slightly confused why they now think that it is a dermoid cyst, since the MRI report says it is a mostly fluid filled mass with thick band like tissues on the outside. I thought dermoid cysts are filled with hair and teeth and other fibrous materials? My mass feels squishy, not hard and full of those parts. Is this just a different type of dermoid cyst? Or could it possibly be something else, and the dermoid cyst is a misdiagnosis?
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Avatar_f_tn
How awful you've had to wait so long.  I know how very frustrating it can be, especially all the waiting that goes along with it.   I would discuss the time off school with your doctor.  In my opinion 2wks just wouldn't be enough time.  I imagine you  don't want to take much time off but it will likely depend on the amount of activity you endure during the day, if there is alot of walking to get around from class to class you may need the full 6wks, it varies for each person.   Perhaps you could do half days. I found myself to be quite sore in the 5th week by afternoon just with caring for my 5yr old.
Does the report itself say it represents as a possible dermoid?  You are right in that a dermoid is often accompanied with teeth, hair, bone, fat, cartilage, ect.. From what I understand  dermoids are the easier ones to diagnose through ultrasound because of this.  I don't believe they are always solid.  (but I am not cetain, will have to check around on the internet again to find out more).   Can you actually feel your cyst?  I've never been able to feel mine but I'm also on the heavier side.
Have you a scheduled appoint for surgery?  Hope everything goes well for you!
Take care  
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Avatar_n_tn
I called my doctor today to further discuss this with him, but unfortunately he wasn't at the office, so I was told to call back tomorrow. I have on average 5 hours of class a day, with about a 3-5 minute walk between each class. I will obviously take all the time off I need until I am fully better, but I just want to be prepared so I know if I should maybe drop a class or two, because I don't know if a full course-load will be possible with a potential 6 weeks off. I will talk to my doctor about this for sure, I just thought I would see what others had to say about the recovery time, so thanks for your help. The report actually says nothing about a dermoid, which is why I found it surprising that this doctor told me that this is what he suspected it was. However, this doctor that I am seeing here in Ontario reviewed the MRI screens with a radiologist, while in Calgary the MRI was reviewed by a resident, so maybe they didn't pick up on it. I can usually feel my cyst when my bladder/bowel is full, as it sticks out of my stomach by quite a few inches on my right side, and sort of looks like a large baseball is lodged in my abdomen. Once I have a bowel movement or urinate, it shrinks back down, which I am assuming is due to the fact that my bowel or bladder is most likely pushing on it. The doctor says it is most likely benign, which I really hope is true. But colon cancer runs in my family, and I read something about ovarian cysts having an association with colon and ovarian cancer. Is it possibly to have either one of those types of cancer at my age (19)? I tend to get quite anxious and worried when I have a major stressor in my life, such as this one, and I feel like I am starting to go crazy just looking at the hundreds of websites on the internet about this!
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