ZocdocAnswersWhen is an ovarian dermoid cyst considered too large for laparoscopy?

Question

When is an ovarian dermoid cyst considered too large for laparoscopy?

size such as 7cm?

Answer

Ovarian cysts are very common in women during reproductive age and most of them are benign. Very few actually cause symptoms, such as pain, that are associated with ovarian cancer. Ovarian dermoid cysts are also known as ovarian teratoma. They contain structures, such as hair, teeth, fluid, or skin glands (all three types of human embryonic layers: endoderm, mesoderm, and ectoderm). They can be smaller than a pea to as big as baseball and can cause pain, torsion, infection, rupture and cancer. About 80-90% of women with dermoid cysts will only have in one side. When detected, removal is generally advised. They don't become tender unless they rupture. Dermoid cysts do not affect a woman's fertility, but their larger tumors can cause a problem for fetal growth due to limited space. OB/GYNs are surgeons whom you need to talk to about removing it. It can be done through a traditional surgery (open surgery or laparoscopy through several small ports and a camera). The larger the cyst the more difficult it can be to remove it laparoscopically. Larger cysts can also increase the risk of rupture. A 7 cm cyst seems doable but it really depends on the experience of your OB/GYN. It is important for you to find someone who can do the procedure laparoscopically but who would readily convert to open approach if its laparoscopy is not feasible or not safe. Again, please discuss with your doctor. Good luck!

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