Ovarian cyst symptoms – how do you know if you have an ovarian cyst?
So, how do you know if you have an ovarian cyst? Ovarian cyst symptoms can be pretty wide-ranging, and according to the NHS, can include;
- Pelvic pain – this can range from a dull, heavy sensation to a sudden, severe and sharp pain
- Pain during sex
- Heavy periods – as well as irregular periods
- Difficulty emptying your bowels
- Needing to wee more often
- Bloating – a swollen tummy
- Feeling very full after only eating a little
My ovarian cyst symptoms also included painful periods and moodiness. When I had my second cyst, these symptoms went on for a few months – and were brushed off as IBS, ovulation pain and other stomach issues.
On the other hand, you might not experience any symptoms at all. But, it’s not strictly true that ovarian cysts only cause symptoms if they rupture or burst. You can have the above symptoms at any point.
So if you do relate to any of these, it’s worth making an appointment with your doctor.
What are the signs of a ruptured ovarian cyst?
The larger the cyst you have, the more likely it is to rupture.
Symptoms of a ruptured ovarian cyst include;
- Sudden abdominal or pelvic pain
- Spotting or blood in your underwear
- Excessive abdominal bloating
Most ruptured ovarian cysts aren’t harmful, even though they can be painful.
However, you should ask for an urgent GP appointment, or call 111, if you’re experiencing either of the following;
- Sudden severe abdominal pain with fever or vomiting
- Cold, clammy skin, rapid breathing, and lightheadedness or weakness
You’ll be assessed for ovarian torsion, as well as for signs of haemorrhage and infection.
Ovarian cyst symptoms and your fertility
Another less common symptom often left off the list of ovarian cyst symptoms is difficulty getting pregnant.
Ovarian cysts don’t usually impact your fertility, although they can sometimes mean that it may take longer for you to conceive.
For example, large cysts can disrupt normal ovarian function or cause structural issues, affecting the release of eggs as well as your hormone levels.
If you’re currently trying to conceive (TTC) and experiencing persistent symptoms, it’s worth having a chat with your doctor or fertility team.