An ovarian cyst is a fluid-filled structure, generally considered to be harmless with no obvious symptoms. The development of ovarian cysts is fairly common. Ovarian cysts during pregnancy are no exception with about 1 in 1000 pregnant women develop ovarian cysts.
In most cases during pregnancy, an ovarian cysts will be benign. It is considered quite rare for ovarian cyst to be cancerous. It is estimated that 1 in 25000 births have an incidence of ovarian cancer. Doctors use an ultrasound in order to identify ovarian cysts as benign or malignant. Fluid-filled masses, without the thick walls of septation, are usually common, benign ovarian cysts. Nevertheless, an ultrasound cannot determine whether the ovarian cyst is benign or malignant with absolute certainty.
Ovarian cysts can grow to a large size. Even if the cyst is not dangerous to health it can lead to complications for a pregnant woman. In the case of a non-pregnant woman, large cysts can cause pain but if an ovarian cyst during pregnancy ruptures or twists on itself it could result in a miscarriage or pre-term labor.
Under most circumstance, women rarely have problems with ovarian cysts during pregnancy, so long as the ovarian cyst does not become too large or ruptures. Even if the ovarian cyst ruptures, the result is often only pain and rarely infection. This pain can be lessened through the use of pain relievers and will not interfere with the normal progress of pregnancy. Moreover, despite their ovarian cyst, women can still use anesthesia during labor. Consequently, ovarian cysts do not present a huge threat during a pregnancy.
If the cyst gets to be quite large it can twist on itself. This can be painful and will often necessitate a surgical procedure to remove the cyst. This shouldn’t harm the baby or adversely affect the pregnancy in any way, but if it can be avoided then it should be during a pregnancy. It may become medically necessary to remove when the ovarian cyst is larger than 6 to 8 cm, unless spontaneous shrinkage occurs.
During a pregnancy, the best time to operate on an ovarian cyst is during the second trimester at 14 to 16 weeks. Though some cysts are removed by laparoscopy, larger cysts are more likely to require an open incision. There is more chance that a large ovarian cysts will rupture. Therefore, women with large ovarian cysts should talk to their doctors about ovarian cysts during pregnancy. In many cases, doctors simply monitor their patient’s condition until the second trimester, in which they choose to operate with no complications.
It’s certainly possible for a woman to develop ovarian cysts while she is pregnant. Once diagnosed they should be monitored carefully. With this said, you will usually find they will simply shrink or disappear with time. Thus you should have nothing to fear, since ovarian cysts during pregnancy carry no greater risk than that for a woman who is not pregnant.