Vaginal cysts are lumps found in the lining of the vagina. Cysts are generally closed sacs filled with fluid. In most cases, a vaginal cyst forms when ducts or glands in the vagina become clogged. The cysts can vary in size, with some being as small as a dime and others becoming as large as a golf ball. Women with very small cysts may be unaware of their presence.
Generally, these cysts fit into one of two categories. Although, there can be several types of these growths, most are either inclusional or gartner's cysts. Vaginal trauma may lead to an inclusional cyst. The most common forms of trauma may come from childbirth or a surgery, such as a hysterectomy. A gartner's cyst usually develops from remnants of a fetal duct, that was necessary in fetal development, which failed to disappear.
If a woman has small vaginal cysts, she may not experience any symptoms. Sometimes, cysts can become large, so large that they may protrude through the vaginal opening. If this happens, an individual may become quite symptomatic. Women with large cysts may experience vaginal pain, swelling and vaginal bleeding. Some woman may also have discomfort and pain during sexual intercourse.
Other symptoms of vaginal cysts may also occur. There can be swelling in the vaginal area. If a woman has a protruding cyst, she may be unable to use tampons. In addition, there may be a noticeable bulge in the area as well. Women with these types of symptoms should see a doctor specializing in gynecology for an exact diagnosis.
To diagnose vaginal cysts, a physician will generally perform a complete gynecologic examination. A pelvic exam will be carried out for a visual and physical analysis of the cysts. If the doctor suspects that a cyst may be a malignant growth, additional tests may be done. For instance, a biopsy may be performed to determine whether the growth is malignant or benign. Knowing this vital information can assist doctors with prescribing the best kind of treatment for the patient.
Treatment may not be necessary for small cysts. In most cases, these types of growths do not present a great deal of problems. Large cysts may need treatment. Surgery may be done to remove large cysts that cause severe symptoms. The purpose of the surgery will be to remove the physical obstruction and to alleviate the worrisome symptoms. Usually, once the cysts are removed, they do not reoccur.
Generally, these cysts cause no great complications, and small cysts may be unnoticeable. Once removed, large cysts typically leave no lasting side effects. For this reason, the prognosis of this health condition is good. Cysts of this nature are not preventable, however, if a women suspects any type of abnormality in her genital region, she should see a doctor and have the issue examined promptly.