What to Expect With Ovarian Cyst Removal

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What to Expect With Ovarian Cyst Removal

For those women who are unlucky enough to experience an ovarian cyst that does not dissolve on its own, surgery for ovarian cyst removal is an option. There are several considerations when preparing for surgery that women should be aware of. Most women feel more comfortable knowing exactly what to expect in regards to the possible complications, the actual procedure, the recovery time and the level of pain that is expected after surgery.

Ovarian cyst removal surgery generally involves removing a cyst through either open or laparoscopic surgery. The surgery can be done to remove just the cyst or, if cancer is found, one or both of the ovaries. In preparation for the procedure, your physician will most likely order a series of tests which usually include an EKG, CT scan, an ultrasound, blood and urine tests, and a physical exam. You may also be asked to stop using any blood thinning medication, such as Coumadin or Plavix, aspirin and ibuprofen. You will also be asked to refrain from eating or drinking anything for a minimum of 8 hours prior to your surgery.

You should always have your doctor explain both the open and laparoscopic procedures because there is a chance that, if a laparoscopic procedure will not allow the proper access, an open procedure may be necessary. The surgery generally lasts for 1 to 2 hours and you will be given either a general or local anesthetic; depending upon the procedure used. There are possible complications with this surgery which include excessive bleeding, blood clots, infection, infertility, shoulder pain and recurrence of cysts and/or cancer.

The average hospital stay after laparoscopic ovarian cyst removal is about 24 hours, while, with open surgery, the stay can expect to be extended up to 7 days. The pain after surgery can last anywhere from 3-10 days and usually depends upon the type of procedure used. However, the actual recovery time can be up to 3 weeks for laparoscopic surgery and up to 5 weeks for open surgery.

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