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What Are the Treatments for a Liver Cyst?

Antibiotics may be necessary to treat a liver cyst.
A liver cyst caused by an bacterial infection can be treated with antibiotics.
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  • Written By: N. Madison
  • Edited By: Jenn Walker
  • Last Modified Date: 11 April 2014
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The treatment used for a liver cyst typically depends on the type of cyst, where it is located, and whether or not it is causing problems with the patient’s health. If a liver cyst is benign and doesn't have a noticeable effect on the patient's health, treatment may not be necessary at all. In other cases, however, health effects or size may necessitate treatment, and doctors may use antibiotics, drainage, or surgery as treatment. In some cases, doctors may even treat a liver cyst by treating the underlying condition that caused it.

One way of treating a liver cyst involves the use of antibiotics. If a cyst has developed because of a bacterial infection, the use of the appropriate antibiotic for the particular type of bacterial infection may prove helpful. The length of time the patient will have to take an antibiotic to treat a liver cyst usually depends on the type of infection and its severity. In some cases, a person may need to take antibiotics for a month or more. In others, however, several days of antibiotic use may be enough.

Drainage is sometimes used for treating simple fluid-filled cysts as well. Doctors, for example, may use drainage to relieve any pressure the cyst is causing. Drainage, however, is not always the best option for treating this type of cyst, as it may not cure the condition that caused it to develop. Instead, the patient may develop new liver cysts over time.

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Surgery is another possible treatment for liver cysts. It is most often used when cysts are very large, causing too much pressure, or contributing to other health problems. It may also be used when cysts have failed to respond well to other types of treatment. Interestingly, not all liver cysts are treated with open surgery; some are treated with laparoscopic surgery, which involves only a small incision through which the cyst is removed. The type of surgery used typically depends on how large the cyst is and the part of the liver in which it is located.

Sometimes treatment for a liver cyst involves taking care of a related condition that has contributed to its development. For example, doctors may prescribe medication for an underlying condition, and this treatment may help to treat the cyst as well. Sometimes, however, treating liver cysts can be as simple as making dietary changes.

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