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Treating Post Menopausal Ovarian Cysts

Updated on July 13, 2010

While most ovarian cysts are harmless and end up shrinking and going away on their own, there is always a risk of complications.  This is why it’s so important for women to get regular pap tests so that cysts can be detected early on and monitored.  It’s crucial for women to stay on top of their health even after they’ve gone through menopause, more than anything to watch for the development of ovarian cysts.  Post menopausal cysts may be rarer than other types but they’re considered to be more serious because they’re more often linked with problems and even cancer.

 If a cyst is found, the next step is usually to have a sonogram which is going to help doctors determine whether the cyst is benign or malignant.  If benign, the doctor will usually choose to leave it alone and monitor it and make sure that it shrinks and goes away on its own.  Malignant cysts are those which are considered to be suspicious for cancer and which will be dealt with right away.  Treatment must be decided on a case to case basis, as there are certain factors including symptoms experienced and age which will determine what treatment is most suitable.

 Surgery is often required to remove suspicious cysts from the body and hopefully avoid the development of cancer.  They basically want to make sure that any possibilities of cancer are removed.  Surgery is usually quite simple unless the ovaries have been destroyed as a result of the cyst and in these cases doctors will usually have to remove the entire ovary.   Although the recovery period will be a lot tougher, it’s usually not as emotionally damaging to women who have already gone through menopause because they’re likely to not have any more children anyway.

 The purpose at this point is to remove as much chance of ovarian cancer developing as possible.  In the cases where doctors are just too late to start treatment and ovarian cancer has already developed, further surgery and treatment must be taken.  After these surgeries women will need to keep up regular appointments with their doctor to make sure that the procedure was successful.  Women just need to make sure that afterwards they see their doctor regularly to ensure that the cyst was completely removed.

 Chemotherapy and radiation are the two most commonly relied on surgeries for treating ovarian cancer.  Chemotherapy, which is also used to treat other forms of cancer, uses drugs injected orally or through an IV to treat the patient.  Radiation therapy is another treatment option for ovarian cancer.  With the radiation therapy, high energy x-rays are used to kill cancer cells.

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