Pain in your pelvis can signify several conditions, including an ovarian cyst. These cysts are often harmless unless they lead to infection or ovarian torsion.
Suppose you're experiencing pain in your pelvis and you’re unsure why; the New England Women's Healthcare team has the tools and experience to help you. Our team consists of eight expert OB/GYN doctors who offer treatment when you've suffered a ruptured ovarian cyst.
Signs of an ovarian cyst
Ovarian cysts are fluid-filled sacs that your ovary often forms with your menstrual cycle. These cysts continue growing after ovulation, sometimes causing discomfort, but they usually go away independently. Functional cysts are expected and include corpus luteum cysts and follicular cysts.
In some cases, though, you might feel discomfort with functional cysts. You may experience various symptoms with functional or other cysts that include the following:
- Pelvic pain
- Dull or aching discomfort
- A full feeling in the abdomen
- Pelvic pressure
Most women don't experience any symptoms with ovarian cysts unless they’re very large or burst. However, if you do have symptoms, they typically resolve when the ovarian cyst goes away.
Symptoms of a ruptured cyst
Functional cysts often rupture and don't cause any symptoms; any symptoms that do develop are mild. However, when other cysts become large and burst, you may end up with various uncomfortable symptoms, including:
- Severe pain
- Nausea or vomiting
- Pelvic tenderness
You could experience these symptoms when a functional cyst ruptures, although it's not common, as they don't usually grow large.
You’re likely to experience these symptoms with larger cysts, such as dermoid cysts or a cystadenoma. These cysts can get very big, causing significant pain and other symptoms when they burst.
What happens next?
If you think you have an ovarian cyst that has ruptured, the first step is to stay calm and keep from panicking. Most ruptured ovarian cysts aren't an emergency but can be painful and uncomfortable.
The truth is you may experience a ruptured ovarian cyst every month after you ovulate. A functional cyst forms monthly and bursts when you ovulate to release an egg.
In most cases, you won't even know a functional cyst ruptures. If you do have pain, it may come on suddenly in your lower abdomen. However, the pain typically subsides within a few hours to a day or so.
In rarer cases, you may have a different type of cyst, such as a dermoid cyst or an endometrioma. If one ruptures, you could have intense pain and bleeding inside your abdomen.
Larger cysts increase your chances of an ovarian torsion, which is an emergency. When the ovary twists, it decreases blood flow to the organ. If you have an ovarian torsion, you can experience extreme sudden pain, nausea, or vomiting.
Usually, a ruptured ovarian cyst isn't something you need to worry about. But if you have pain that doesn't go away or signs of an infection, you should consult our team immediately. We can help you evaluate your cyst to determine if we need to take any medical action for your health.
If you're suffering from a painful ovarian cyst, call the New England Women's Healthcare team today or make an appointment online at our Wilmington or Woburn, Massachusetts, offices.