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15cm cyst with complex components. What can I expect?

Hello. I'm 27 and I noticed a few weeks ago my stomach below my belly button was a little hard. I passed it off as a "poop baby" as I do get pretty constipated from time to time. But two week later with some movement in the bathroom I noticed I was even bigger so went to the walk in. Thankfully they believed me that I was not pregnant since I took a test a week prior and the test at the office was negative. Doc thought my uterus was enlared to about 20 weeks size so thought maybe an infection and sent my right away for a ultrasound.

Turns out it's a 15 cm cyst with solid nodules around it. Borderline tumour possibly.ether originating from my left ovary or fallopian tube. They couldn't assure me everything was ok so it's kind of freaked me out. I was supposed to get in for a priority CT scan the weekend but I guess they didn't get to me because new years.

I'm positive it was gotten bigger since. Seems to be growing super fast. Also I noticed a new lump just above mt pubes. Thankfully I'm in no pain and no history of ovarian cancer in my family.just looks fat lol

Just wanted to know if anyone else has a cyst like this that grew this fast and what the experience was like. Did you get it removed surgically? What kind of procedure did they use and how fast did you recover etc?

Looking online it seems u likely it's serious the doc is all vague and says we can't rule out cancer yikes.

2 Responses
Avatar universal
I had a 9.5cm cyst when I was 49. I ended up having surgery and afterwards discovered that my gynecologist was deceptive about my condition and treatment options to get me to sign the consent form for hysterectomy (uterus removal) and oophorectomy (ovary removal). He used ovarian cancer scare tactics even though most ovarian cysts are benign including complex ones that have suspicious traits (such as nodules or septations). The shocking part is that my surgeon sent the cyst (actually the whole ovary) for frozen section biopsy while I was in the operating room. When it came back benign / non-cancerous, he continued removing organs - my other ovary, tubes, and uterus!

Imaging is not exact so it can be difficult to tell the type of cyst. Even solid appearing cysts (such as hemorrhagic) can be benign and  resolve on their own. Multiple adjacent cysts can appear as one complex cyst as the borders can look like septations.

Unfortunately, many women lose an ovary or ovaries for benign cysts. That is SELDOM necessary IF you have a surgeon who is both ethical and has good cystectomy (cyst removal) skills and is willing to take the extra time and care (with possibly no more reimbursement $) to do a cystectomy. This is a pretty good website about ovarian cysts - http://ovaryresearch.com/ovarian_cysts.htm.

Removal of any part of the reproductive system (even one ovary) can permanently disrupt natural hormone production which can have serious negative effects on many aspects of health as well as fertility. The other ovary can sometimes compensate but there's no guarantee.  

The uterus, ovaries and tubes have lifelong non-reproductive functions with the ovaries producing hormones a woman's whole life.

Please keep us posted as you find out more.
Avatar universal
Hi thank you for answering me! I have seen the gynecologist since this post and she was very optimistic about the cyst saying she has no reason to seriously suspect it is cancerous (my tumour markers were only slightly elevated, the cyst does not 'feel' stereotypically cancerous,no fluid building up in the abdominal cavity etc.) . But since it is not a simple functional cyst and has these solid nodules she is still sending me to an oncologist to be safe in case there are surprises when they open me.

She said I will need surgery and will for sure loose an ovary and fallopian tube (they could not identify my left ovary on the ultrasound)that is not so bad just the one ovary, I know people who lost an ovary and had children!

She did however warn me they will ask consent to remove EVERYTHING during surgery in case it proves malignant.that freaks me out especially hearing people say they have removed organs unnecessarily before. I have never wanted children but I do not want to go through menopause at 27!!

I had a CT scan today so maybe more info next week.
It's good to hear this cyst is likely just one of the common "garden variety" benign ones. But yes, if there's even a slight possibility of cancer, seeing a gyn oncologist makes sense.  

I don't know why you would "for sure" lose an ovary and fallopian tube. Maybe the oncologist to whom she referred you does not have good cystectomy skills? The removal of an ovary can cause permanent problems and not just infertility. It can permanently disrupt ovarian hormone function and even cause an earlier and/or surgical type menopause.

The ovaries of an intact woman produce hormones her whole like (they do not shut down at menopause). Loss of ovaries or their function is associated with many health problems - heart disease, stroke, osteoporosis, lung cancer, dementia, Parkinsons, impaired cognition and memory, ocular changes, skin changes, more severe hot flashes, vaginal atrophy.    

I personally wish I had revised the consent form to only allow removal of organs IF the frozen section came back positive for cancer. I would have had the surgeon sign off on the revisions and made a copy for myself. That would have been the only "protection" I had.

What did you find out from the CT scan?
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