People often confuse ovarian cysts with uterine fibroids, although the two are entirely different conditions. Here’s what you should know about these differences.
Ovarian cysts are fluid-filled cavities in the ovary that could potentially develop as part of the follicle, which forms monthly with the developing egg. These cysts are typically benign, though in rare cases they may be cancerous. Most of the time, ovarian cysts are asymptomatic, but they can sometimes cause women to feel pelvic pain, pelvic pressure, abdominal enlargement, or bowel or bladder issues.
Many women never need treatment for ovarian cysts, as their cysts are either asymptomatic, or may simply go away without medical intervention. However, doctors can also remove problematic cysts laparoscopically if necessary through a procedure known as a cystectomy.
Uterine fibroids are benign tumors that develop in the wall of the uterus, and are extremely common. However, many women never show any of the signs and symptoms of fibroids, and consequently never have to worry about fibroid treatments. On the other hand, other women may experience some excruciating symptoms of fibroid cysts — such as abnormal menstrual bleeding and pain during intercourse — depending on how large their fibroids grow, and where they develop.
Fortunately, there are various uterine fibroid treatments that can help. In less severe cases, medicinal fibroid treatments are available to help mitigate and manage the symptoms, and also shrink the fibroids. There are also non-invasive fibroid treatments when medicine won’t be able to help enough, which can eliminate the tumors without damaging surrounding tissues. Sometimes, though, this isn’t enough to solve the problem, as more fibroids can develop after the fibroid treatments. In these cases, surgical fibroid treatments may be necessary, but again, these are only after other uterine fibroids treatment options didn’t work.
If you have any questions about the differences between ovarian cysts and uterine fibroids, feel free to share in the comments.