A Laparoscopic Ovarian Cystectomy is a surgical procedure used for the removal of a cyst from your ovary. It is a minimally invasive surgical procedure that ends with a few small incisions in the lower abdomen.

Many women have ovarian cyst. This causes little to no symptoms. However, a surgical procedure to remove them is required when they are causing you pain and discomforting you. Some women go through extreme pelvic pain, especially during sexual intercourse or periods.

It is a surgical procedure which is done to remove an ovarian cyst or tumor and by preserving the ovary and fertility. The procedure is done to preserve the ovaries and fertility.

Ovarian cysts are the fluid-filled sacs found in the ovaries. An ovarian follicle is considered to be an ovarian cyst if it is larger than 3 cm. There are two types of ovarian cysts:

  1.    Functional ovarian cysts – Linked to the menstrual cycle, this type of cysts affects girls and women who aren’t at the menopausal stage yet. These are extremely common.

Every month, the ovaries release an egg. This egg then reaches the womb or the uterus after traveling down the fallopian tubes where it can be fertilized by a sperm.

Each egg is formed in a structure inside the ovary known as the follicle. There is a fluid present inside the follicle that protects the egg when it grows and when the egg is released, it bursts. Sometimes a follicle doesn’t release an egg, or the fluid isn’t discharged or shrunk after the egg has been released. This results in the swelling of the follicle followed by the formation of the cyst.

These are benign, harmless cysts that can sometimes cause symptoms like pelvic pain. Many of them will disappear within a few months without any treatment procedure.

  1.    Pathological cysts – Pathological cysts are the cysts that are not a result of the menstrual cycle but are formed as the result of abnormal cell growth. They can be formed before or after the menopause.

Created from either the cells covering the outer part of the ovary or the cells used in the creation of the eggs, pathological cysts can sometimes burst or grow so large that they start blocking the blood supply to the ovaries.

Most of the pathological cysts are benign, but some can be malignant which require immediate removal through surgical procedures.

Symptoms of an ovarian cyst

The symptoms of an ovarian cyst are visible only if it ruptures or is blocking the blood supply to the ovaries. Here are some common symptoms of an ovarian cyst:

  1.    Pelvic pain
  2.    Difficulty during bowel movements
  3.    Frequent urination
  4.    Pain during intercourse
  5.    Swollen or bloated tummy
  6.    Feeling full after a small meal
  7.    Heavy, lighter or irregular periods than normal
  8.    Difficulty in getting pregnant

Who should get the procedure?

The Laparoscopic Ovarian Cystectomy depends on the age of the patient, the size of the cyst, and chances of malignancy.

If you have any of the following signs and symptoms, your doctor might suggest the procedure:

  1.    Ovarian cancer
  2.    Ovarian cysts with a size larger than 6 to 7 cm.
  3.    Ovaries mass is on both the ovaries
  4.    Complications like rupture
  5.    A cyst formed is not a simple functional cyst

What is the other test done before the procedure?

Here are some tests that are performed before the ovarian cystectomy:

  1.    Ultrasound test to detect ovarian cysts
  2.    Pregnancy test to rule out pregnancy
  3.    CA-125 blood test (not specific but high levels show signs of malignancy)
  4.    Imaging tests like CT scan, Doppler flow, and MRI scan

Before the procedure

  •    Do not eat or drink anything at least 24 hours before the surgery.
  •    Get someone to drive you home after the procedure as you will be under the influence of general anesthesia.
  •    As all the questions you have before the surgery.

The procedure

Also known as the keyhole surgery, the Laparoscopic surgery is a minimally invasive technique in which the ovarian cyst is removed by preserving the ovaries or the ovarian tissue. This method is also used to confirm the presence of ovarian cysts. Here is how the procedure goes:

  1.    Depending on the location of the cyst, you will be administered a local or general anesthesia intravenously.
  2.    Next, three to four small incisions will be made in the abdomen so that the laparoscope and other surgical instruments can be inserted.
  3.    A laparoscope is an instrument with a video camera at its end. As it is inserted into one of the incision, the doctor will be able to view the internal organs on a monitor. These images will help the doctor guide the surgical instruments to the location of the cyst.
  4.    After this, the cyst is separated from the ovarian tissue and removed. In some cases, where the cyst involves the whole ovary, you might have to remove the ovary as it is impossible to separate the cyst. Sometimes, when the cyst cannot be completely removed, then it is partially removed.
  5.    Once the procedure is completed, dissolvable stitches are used to sew the incisions.
  6.    In some cases, the air is used to create space between your abdominal wall and the internal organs.

After surgery

After the surgery, you will feel a little pain in your stomach. Total recovery will take about 6 to 8 weeks. For the first 2 weeks, you will have to take things easy. If the cyst is taken for testing, you will get the result in a few weeks. After this, you can decide the further procedures to be done. Contact your doctor if you see any of the following symptoms:

  •    A high temperature (fever)
  •    Severe pain
  •    Swelling in the abdomen
  •    Heavy bleeding
  •    Dark or smelly vagina

If you haven’t reached the menopause stage, the doctor will try to preserve as much reproductive system as they can. Your fertility will be unaffected if only the cyst is removed and both ovaries are left intact. If one of the ovaries is removed, the other ovary will release the hormone and the egg. It will be slightly harder for you to get pregnant but overall, your fertility wouldn’t be significantly affected. However, if both the ovaries are removed, it will trigger early menopause and you won’t be able to produce an egg leading to infertility. You can still have a baby using a donated egg that will be implanted in your womb. Whatever the case, make sure that you discuss your fertility concerns with your doctor before the procedure.

Advantages of laparoscopic ovarian cystectomy:

  •    Less risk of infections
  •    Shorter stay in the hospital
  •    Fewer side effects.
  •    Fast recovery
  •    Recovery is very fast
  •    Less Pain and discomfort

At the Apollo Cradle, Motinagar, we make sure that you are being taken proper care of. We have state-of-the-art technology to deal with any situation. Our team of experienced doctors and medical staff has dealt with a lot of such procedures and will make sure that you get the correct treatment. We also will make sure that all your fertility concerns are dealt with.