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What Are the Symptoms of Uterine Cysts?

By Erin J. Hill
Updated Mar 03, 2024
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The most common symptoms of uterine cysts are abdominal pain, abnormal bleeding between menstrual periods, or heavier than average periods. Other symptoms which may occur include an enlarged uterus, fertility issues, and trouble urinating. Many times uterine cysts are discovered during an examination for another condition. There are many women who do not experience symptoms.

Uterine cysts are growths of tissue which occur on or in the uterus. They are noncancerous and usually not life-threatening unless they grow especially large. Some cysts will eventually burst and others may spontaneously go away on their own. Others may require surgical removal in order to avoid complications.

If uterine cysts are very small, they are often asymptomatic. When symptoms of uterine cysts do occur, abdominal pain and cramping are the most common. Bleeding between menstrual periods and heavier than normal bleeding during periods are also potential symptoms. Many times these symptoms are very subtle, so cysts often go undiagnosed for extended periods of time. Since symptoms of uterine cysts can also be symptoms of uterine cancer, it is important that any woman experiencing these things consult with a gynecologist for a thorough examination.

Occasionally the first noticeable symptoms of uterine cysts will be an inability to urinate, urgency, or pain upon urination. These can also be symptoms of urinary tract infection, but when they occur with uterine cysts, additional symptoms are generally present. Occasionally, lower back pain and digestive upset may also occur.

Treatment for uterine cysts may vary based on the severity of symptoms of uterine cysts that a woman experiences, the nature of the growth, and whether or not the cyst may cause problems with any other systems within the body. Small cysts which are not causing severe pain or blocking or affecting any other organs may be left alone. Many cysts go away on their own without treatment. Large or painful cysts may be removed surgically.

Any cyst which is suspected to be uterine cancer will typically be removed and biopsied. It is not always possible to tell whether a growth within the uterus is a cyst or cancer without removing it. Both uterine cysts and uterine cancer occur most often in women over the age of 45. Cysts may also occur in younger women, and they may result in infertility. It is often during fertility-related exams that young women discover they have cysts. Growths may also occur on the ovaries.

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Discussion Comments
By anon1006809 — On May 24, 2022

Thank you so much for taking the time to comment on what a burst cyst may feel like and some advice to help when it does happen. This was more helpful than you know 8 years later. Thank you, thank you.

By Instion — On Jan 27, 2014

The pain from a burst cyst is really horrible, but will subside after a few hours. When the pain first starts it may feel like you have to move your bowels, but refrain from doing this as it will only worsen the pain. If you are unfamiliar with uterine cysts and pain, it may feel like the appendix is bursting, however appendicitis pain starts below the navel and focuses on the lower-right side above the hip bone.

Try to work through the pain of a burst cyst with a warm bath.

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