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Forums » Smalltalk » AMA: I had a Laparoscopic Cystectomy (Surgery)

July of this year I had a Laparoscopic Cystectomy to remove an ovarian cyst that I had for 5 years. Ask me anything!
How dangerous is laparoscopic cystectomy? And how common is it? What are the syptoms?
MercyInReach Topic Starter

ChebaTheBee wrote:
How dangerous is laparoscopic cystectomy? And how common is it? What are the syptoms?

How dangerous is laparoscopic cystectomy?

It's one of the safest surgeries one can get, however does come with complications as they all do. The most common complications include bleeding at incision site and having to remove one or both ovaries if the cysts attatched to them are too large or complex to remove otherwise. Post-op complications usually are minor such as constipation that requires a visit to doctor to get things moving again so to speak, but infection is always a risk with every surgery, though rare for this one.

How common is it?

About 5 million people assigned female at birth (in the US) have polycystic ovarian syndrome, or cysts on their ovaries. Almost all of the people I know who have PCOS have had a laparoscopic cystectomy at least once in their lives. So I would say it's fairly common.

What are the syptoms?

I'm not sure if this question is asking the side effects after the surgery or syptoms that lead me to getting surgery so I'll answer both.

After surgery: I was very tired, very sore, and could not walk well for about 3-4 days, couldn't sleep on my side until the 3rd day. I had issues with constipation the first few weeks which is a common side effect of being under anesthesia, but it went away. My insicsions closed completely after 3 weeks, and turned into scars over weeks 4-5. Now a few months later they are pink and white raised scars that still get pretty itchy sometimes.

What lead me to surgery: My cyst was found about 5 years ago when I was having a lot of pain, went to the ER, an they told me I had an ovarian cyst. The doctors there told me there wasn't anything they could do about it but give me pain meds and that I was unlikely to find a doctor willing to remove it because of how young I was and the danger to my fertility.

They were right. I struggled for years. Having bad pains every few months and having to rest with hot packs on my stomach. It got to the point where exercising would irritate it and I'd have pain more often. Along side issues with a crazy and inconsistent cycle I was sick of it.

I found my current doctor in April of this year, and she continues to be the best doctor I have ever had. She had me get another ultrasound to make sure the cyst was in fact still there and check on it, then told me it was still there, just chilling. She asked me what I wanted to do, I said I wanted it removed. She told me the risks, then asked again, I said 'I want it out of me' in those exact words, and she smiled and said 'then let's get that thing out'.

At first I was nervous, anxiety kept me from scheduling my surgery for about a month, but then I scheduled my surgery for July, and never looked back.
Oh my. O-O It doesn't sound pleasant at all. And sorry for asking a vague question. DX I was referring to the symptoms of having laparoscopic cystectomy, but thanks for answering though! And it's great to hear you have a good doctor now as well!
MercyInReach Topic Starter

ChebaTheBee wrote:
Oh my. O-O It doesn't sound pleasant at all. And sorry for asking a vague question. DX I was referring to the symptoms of having laparoscopic cystectomy, but thanks for answering though! And it's great to hear you have a good doctor now as well!

Definitely not pleasant but I feel much much better now than I did before surgery!

Thank you so much for asking great questions <3
A cystectomy is actually removal of the bladder, not a cyst. It's not very intuitive, we definitely complained enough about it in med school during our bladder cancer cases 😅

How was the recovery afterwards, were you in a lot of pain? How long did it take you to kind of get back to your 'normal life'? It's so good that you're spreading awareness of this, I know from both professional and personal experience that AFAB-adjacent pain is rarely taken as seriously as it should be!
MercyInReach Topic Starter

Rune_stoner wrote:
A cystectomy is actually removal of the bladder, not a cyst. It's not very intuitive, we definitely complained enough about it in med school during our bladder cancer cases 😅


Yeah, a cystectomy is removal of the bladder, but laparoscopic cystectomy is removal of cysts from the ovaries (though, wouldn't it also be laparoscopic removal of the bladder? lmao), at least that's what it says on my surgery paperwork. They really should come up with some new terms :P

How was the recovery afterwards, were you in a lot of pain? How long did it take you to kind of get back to your 'normal life'?



I was in quite a bit of pain for the first 2-3 days, hurt a lot to move, stand, shift in the recliner I was in. That got a lot better day 4 and onwards. I was back to doing most of what I normally did 80% pain free after 7-8 days. The other 20% of pain was mainly the incisions still healing and the scars hurting. I had to work up to my usual level of exercise over the course of about 2-3 months, but everything else in my life was normal after 2 weeks. Sometimes my scars still sting but don't keep me from doing anything.

Thank you for asking!! <3
Oh my gosh yes you're right! 😮 I had to Google it because I'm not sure we use it like that in Swedish and I hadn't heard of it during my studies/practice thus far, but this changes everything. Genuinely thank you for letting me know! I'm really pleased to have learned multiple interesting things during this event haha ❤️

It sounds like you recovered really well! I am super glad to hear that ❤️ It sucks being in pain, but it must feel really good that you went for it you know? I think it's really brave.

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