Ovarian Cystectomy


An ovarian cystectomy is a surgical procedure designed to remove ovarian cysts. Ovarian cysts are fluid-filled sacs or pouches that develop on the ovary. While these cysts are frequently benign and resolve spontaneously, your healthcare provider may suggest an ovarian cystectomy if the cyst persists, increases in size, or causes discomfort.


Ovarian cysts are removed by surgeons in two different ways:

  • Open cystectomy (laparotomy): The ovarian cyst is removed by your surgeon using a single, major abdominal incision. In case of a large ovarian cyst or if they detect malignant growth in the cyst, they could choose for this approach.
  • Laparoscopic ovarian cystectomy: Through a tiny abdominal incision, your surgeon places a tiny camera with a light on top—a laparoscope. They can see your reproductive and pelvic organs thanks to this device. The physician creates two further tiny incisions and inserts their surgical instruments within. Afterwards, the ovarian cyst is extracted through those incisions.

Since laparoscopic ovarian cystectomy is less invasive and requires less recovery time than open surgery, surgeons prefer it. However, open surgery can be the only option if they detect malignancy or if the cyst is too big to remove laparoscopically.

Reasons for undergoing the procedure

Ovarian cysts can be removed through open or laparoscopic surgery. Your surgeon will go over each available course of treatment. The choice of surgery is dependent upon a number of factors, including the cyst’s size, cancer risk, medical history, and the woman’s intention to become pregnant.

Cysts in the ovaries are common. They’re commonly discovered by healthcare providers during pelvic examinations or other imaging procedures, even before you know you have one. Most cysts eventually disappear on their own. Your healthcare provider may recommend surgery to remove a cyst if it doesn’t go away.

The most common causes of ovarian cysts includes:

  • Cancer.
  • Endometriosis.
  • Ovulation or using medication to induce ovulation.
  • Pelvic inflammatory disease.
  • Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).

To determine if surgery is necessary, your healthcare provider is the best person to consult. Given the pain felt by the patient, the size of the cyst, and the possibility of malignancy, it could be the best course of action.


It is a safe procedure. There are risks associated with every surgical operation. You will hear from your surgeon about potential risks. The following are a few possible risk:

  • Allergic reaction to anesthesia.
  • Bleeding.
  • Blood clots.
  • Infection.
  • Incision site irritation.
  • Injury to your fallopian tube, ovary, or surrounding tissues.
  • Requiring an oophorectomy, or the removal of one or both ovaries.
  • The cyst returns following surgery.

You could have a higher risk of complications if you’ve had surgery on your abdomen or pelvic organs in the past. Your risk for complications may also be increased by other factors, such as obesity, diabetes, or smoking. Consult your healthcare provder to ensure that you are aware of risks associated with surgery.

Before the procedure

How to get ready for surgery will be discussed with you by your surgeon. They may give specific preparation instructions, such as when to stop taking medications, when to stop eating and drinking, and what time to be at the surgery center or hospital.

Make sure to ask any questions you may have prior to the procedure day.

During the procedure

During an ovarian cystectomy procedure, you’ll be under general anesthesia. Your anesthesia provider will place an IV catheter in your vein to administer medication and fluids during surgery. Once you’re asleep and prepared, your surgeon will commence the operation.

In a laparoscopic cystectomy, your surgeon will insert a laparoscope through a small incision near your belly button, equipped with a camera for visual guidance. Carbon dioxide is used to inflate your abdominal wall, providing a clear view of your pelvic organs. Additional small incisions are made in your lower abdomen for surgical instruments, through which the cyst is removed. There may be a need to test the cyst for cancer.

After the procedure, your surgeon deflates your abdomen and closes the incisions with dissolvable stitches, often covered with a bandage.

If laparoscopic cystectomy isn’t feasible, open surgery is performed. This entails a larger incision in the abdomen to access and remove the cyst. Once the cyst is removed, the incision is closed with stitches and a bandage is applied for protection.

After the procedure

Following surgery, you will go to the recovery room. You can have some pain after the procedure due to the carbon dioxide in the air or from the operation itself. Your heart rate, blood pressure, and other vital indicators will be monitored by your healthcare team.

After having a laparoscopic cystectomy, you can be discharged in two or three hours. If your operation was open, you could have to spend the night.

Depending on the kind of surgery you have. You should be able to resume your normal activities in two to three weeks if your surgeon can complete the treatment laparoscopically, which is a less invasive method. Surgery still carries some risk, although it’s minimal.

If open surgery is necessary, the process is more invasive, has a longer recovery period, and has a higher risk of complications. You should anticipate changing your activities for at least six to eight weeks. Recovery might take up to 12 weeks.

Make sure you communicate to your healthcare provider about the procedure so you are fully aware of what to anticipate.


Everyone’s recovery period is different. The recovery period following a laparoscopic cystectomy is one to three weeks. You might be able to get back to your regular activities, such going back to work, after one to two weeks. You might be able to start doing some modest exercise. Your recovery period may extend to eight weeks if your surgeon conducts an open cystectomy.

The removal of an uncomfortable or potentially dangerous cyst from your ovary by a healthcare provider is the primary benefit of an ovarian cystectomy. Cancerous ovarian cysts are possible, particularly if they appear after menopause. Other complexities consist of:

  • The cyst ruptures, causing severe pain.
  • The ovary twists on itself due to the cyst’s weight, which might stop your ovary’s blood supply. This is extremely painful and can result in the full loss of your ovary.

There may be instances where your surgeon must carry out an open abdominal cystectomy. Even though this is a more involved procedure, the advantages of getting rid of the ovarian cyst still outweigh the risks. However, for most cases, laparoscopic cystectomy are preferred by surgeons because to their less invasiveness and quick recovery.

Contact your healthcare provider if you underwent an ovarian cystectomy if:

  • Fever or flu-like symptoms.
  • Painful urination or unable to pee.
  • Severe pelvic pain.
  • Severe vaginal bleeding.
  • Swelling of legs or begin to throb.
  • The area surrounding your incisions turns painful, pus-filled, or red.