Conceiving with ovarian cyst

Ovarian cysts are like fluid-filled sacs on or within the ovaries. Cysts can naturally happen because of the ovulation cycle. They are very common, and most women will experience a cyst at some point during their lives. However, all ovarian cysts are not the same, while some are harmless, they will either break or get re-absorbed, while others can affect the ability to get pregnant. Unless they become very large, these cysts generally don’t affect fertility. To understand how to get pregnant with ovarian cyst or conceiving with ovarian cyst, let’s go through the article.
How to Get Pregnant With Ovarian Cysts?
How to Get Pregnant With Ovarian Cysts?

How to Get Pregnant with Ovarian Cysts?

To increase your chances of getting pregnant with ovarian cysts, one needs to have good health, and a healthy lifestyle, and must eat a balanced diet. Several health conditions may upset the plans of having a baby by affecting fertility. One such health condition may be the presence of ovarian cyst. Ovarian cyst can be associated with decreased fertility, but it depends on the type of ovarian cyst.

How Does an Ovarian Cyst Form?

Each month the brain stimulates the ovary to make (an) egg by releasing a hormone that stimulates a follicle to grow. Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) causes a fluid collection around an egg to enlarge. Once the egg is mature, a second hormone is released by the brain to get the ovary to release the egg. After the egg comes out (Ovulation), the follicular cyst converts to a cyst that has a yellow pigment called lutein. So, during each monthly cycle, there is a cyst normally present in the ovary.

For the first two weeks, the growing follicular cyst contains the maturing egg, and for the second two weeks, the corpus luteum makes a hormone to help promote pregnancy. In rare cases, fluid accumulates within a thin membrane inside the ovary, and there is no egg inside and forms a cyst. If a cyst grows larger than 5 centimetres, one must have check-ups in a month or two to see if it will continue to grow. If it gets larger, then one might need surgery to remove the cyst. Even though these types of cysts always don’t have a negative effect on fertility.

Infertility Due to Cysts

In some cases, when women are on birth control pills or hormone medications, they will not be able to conceive. The contraceptive medication prevents ovulation and hence inhibits pregnancy. Oral contraceptive is prescribed to those women who are currently not considering family planning.

Some cysts like functional cysts, dermoid and cystadenomas do not affect the fertility of a woman or the normal functioning of the ovaries. Cysts like endometriomas can cause infertility and prevent a woman from being able to conceive naturally. Women whose ovaries continue to make lots of small cysts are known to have a condition called polycystic ovaries. These are a non-functional cyst and do not go on their own. The ovarian cyst infertility prevents a woman from getting pregnant by causing a hormonal imbalance and restricting follicle maturation.

Follicular Cysts and Pregnancy

The functional cysts such as follicular cysts or corpus luteum cysts – are the most common type of ovarian cysts and get developed during the normal menstrual cycle. They don’t contribute to infertility. In-fact the necessary functions leading to fertility are taking place.

Chocolate Cysts and Pregnancy

Chocolate cysts actually are the scars containing old blood. They attach to the ovaries and may adversely affect the ovarian function. In some cases, these cysts can prevent ovaries from functioning and affect conceiving.

Types of an Ovarian Cysts (Broadly Divided according to Fertility)

1) Cysts, which don’t affect fertility/pregnancy
2) Cysts, which interfere with fertility/pregnancy

1) Cysts which Don’t Interfere with Fertility/Pregnancy

These ovarian cysts, even though they may bleed and cause pain, will not affect one’s fertility unless their size increases significantly.

  • FUNCTIONAL OVARIAN CYSTS

A functional cyst is either follicular or luteal cyst that develops on the surface of the ovary during the menstrual cycle. They usually hold a developing egg. In a normal case, the sac becomes small and dissolves once the egg is released. This sac may swell up with fluid, if an egg is not released, or if the sac closes again after the egg is released. These cysts do not show any signs or symptoms. They usually dissolve without any treatment after a couple of menstrual cycles. Functional cysts do not cause infertility, and pregnancy can easily be achieved with a functional cyst.

However, if a cyst becomes too large, it can get ruptured and bleed, and ovarian torsion can happen that can cause extreme pain. Ovarian torsion happens in cases of enlarged ovaries. The incidence of ovarian torsion rises 5-6-fold during pregnancy. If not diagnosed in time, it can cause foetal death and even potential loss of fertility of the woman. So, a large cyst should be monitored to avoid any fatal consequence. Ruptured cysts can cause pelvic infection, which may scar the fallopian tubes and can affect getting pregnant.

  • CYSTADENOMAS

They are a kind of benign tumour. They are growths in the ovary that develop from the tissues at the surface of the ovary. Although they require treatment, cystadenomas do not affect fertility.

  • DERMOID CYSTS

A strange type of tumour, generally harmless found in the ovary that typically contains different types of tissues, including neural tissue, hair, teeth, bone, instead of fluid. Dermoid cysts do not cause infertility.

  • HEMORRHAGIC CYSTS

A hemorrhagic cyst is a functional cyst that develops when the bleeding occurs in the cyst. Its symptoms include abdominal cyst in one side of the body. They do not lead to or interfere with infertility.

  • PARAOVARIAN CYSTS

Paraovarian cysts are the fluid filld cysts in the adnexa, adjacent to the fallopian tube and ovary. It is a type of cyst that does not affect fertility. However, if grown large, it might require surgeries to treat these cysts.

2) Cysts which Interfere with Fertility/Pregnancy

Two types of cysts that are most harmful to fertility are ovarian cysts resulting from polycystic ovary syndrome, and endometriomas – caused by endometriosis. These cysts need treatment because they may cause fertility issues.

ENDOMETRIOMA

They are also known as an endometrial cyst, it is a type of cyst formed when endometrial tissue, abnormally grows in the ovaries. The endometrium is the mucous membrane that lines the inner layer of the uterine wall. It affects pregnancy and causes chronic pain in the pelvic area during periods. Endometrial cysts are more often packed with dark, reddish-brown blood and may vary in size. They are also called chocolate cysts and causes infertility.

Endometrioma
Endometrioma

Endometriosis affects 5-10% of all women, and not all of them have fertility problems. A woman with endometrioma may not experience any issues or pain. It is only discovered during a routine gynaecological examination through a vaginal ultrasound or X-ray. An endometrioma or chocolate cysts begin as a small lesion on the ovaries. It may remain very small (just a few millimetres in size) and is not a cause for concern. However, some cysts grow large (over 10 cm) or become very painful with the menstrual cycle.

Larger cysts tend to be the most problematic for fertility. If an endometrioma ruptures, its contents can enter the pelvic cavity. This can cause ovaries to adhere to the fallopian tubes creating fertility blockages and pain. Endometriomas disturb the normal tubo-ovarian relationship. In severe cases, endometriomas can affect ovarian reserve, damage the ovaries, or even require oophorectomy (removal of the infected ovary, and keeping the other ovary intact) which makes a female infertile.

CYSTS RESULTING FROM PCOS (POLYCYSTIC OVARIAN SYNDROME)

Polycystic ovarian syndrome or PCOS is the most common cysts that create problems in a woman trying to get pregnant. They can cause enlarged ovaries and the development of small ovarian cysts due to hormonal imbalance. Many small cysts in ovaries along with irregular periods, excess hair growth, acne, insulin resistance and obesity are all symptoms of polycystic ovary syndrome. Hence conceiving with polycystic ovary syndrome becomes problematic by hampering fertility, causing a hormonal imbalance and restricting follicle maturation.

Polycystic Ovary
Polycystic Ovary

 

Women with PCOS can struggle to become pregnant and are at higher risk of developing complications during pregnancy. However, by managing the symptoms, many women with PCOS can become pregnant and have a healthy baby. It is important for patients to visit a doctor if they experience any symptoms related to PCOS. This will reduce the risk of complications when a woman decides to become pregnant. PCOS women struggle to get pregnant because of the presence of high levels of the male hormone androgen which prevents the release of an egg (ovulation).

While conceiving with a polycystic ovary, certain things need to be followed, such as a woman should maintain a healthy weight, healthy eating, exercise regularly, monitoring ovulation and plan sexual intercourse accordingly. A doctor might prescribe fertility medicines, if medications don’t work, the doctor might suggest surgery to remove a tiny amount of tissue that produces the excess male hormone in the ovaries. Otherwise, complications during pregnancy might increase such as miscarriages, high blood pressure induced by the pregnancy, gestational diabetes and even premature birth.

How to Conceive with Ovarian Cysts?

So, from the above article, we understand that women suffering from conditions like polycystic ovaries and endometriomas might face fertility issues. However, they can be managed with lifestyle changes or infertility treatments or minor surgery (removal of endometrioma). However, if medications or any other treatment doesn’t work, and the existing cyst has caused any scarring, the last option that would be available for these women would be IVF (In vitro fertilisation), which would offer the best chance of conception. IVF is an assisted reproductive technology in which the ovaries are artificially stimulated by administering hormonal injections, and when the eggs are mature, they are extracted directly from the ovaries and fertilised in a lab and then the embryo is transferred in a woman’s uterus.

Ovarian Cyst Success Story

Tina (34) was trying to conceive for a long time, but each time a negative urine pregnancy test broke her heart.

I was diagnosed with polycystic ovarian syndrome at the age of 17. I always knew I would have trouble conceiving. After trying naturally when I couldn’t conceive, I decided to visit a fertility clinic. After much research and going by high success rate, I decided to visit Medicover Fertility. There, I met Dr Sweta Gupta, who is the Clinical Director at Medicover. The first question I asked her was “How to conceive with Ovarian Cyst?” and she recommended Ovulation Induction Therapy, a process that would increase the number of eggs ovulating each month. Dr Sweta Gupta also recommended me to see an Endocrinologist, where I was told to lose weight, a diet plan was charted out, and some medicines were given. I worked hard, but it didn’t help me with my fertility issue. I had even one unsuccessful IUI (Intrauterine insemination). After a failed IUI Dr Gupta recommended IVF. My first cycle of IVF was cancelled due to low egg production, and my second cycle was successful as all other things were kept in mind. Moreover, thank you Medicover Fertility and Dr.Gupta I have beautiful twin boys today.

Doctor’s Suggestion on Ovarian Cyst – Dr. Sweta Gupta (Clinical Director – Medicover Fertility)

PCOS treatment is often focused on reducing the symptoms of the disorder and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Main focus should be on weight reduction. Drugs are given to induce egg formation in each menstrual cycle and when one mature egg forms, timed intercourse or intrauterine insemination is advised. Some PCOS patients are resistant, and it is difficult to induce egg formation with oral drugs.

How can Medicover Fertility Help Women with Fertility Issues Caused by Ovarian Cyst?

Medicover Fertility is a fertility clinic that enables couples with severe infertility problems to successfully conceive and take home a healthy baby. Medicover uses advanced fertility treatments to help couples in dealing with different kinds of infertility complications. Infertility caused due to ovarian cysts can be successfully treated at Medicover.

Women who go through cyst removal (endometrioma) procedure, which is minimally invasive, might face the risk of getting a scar tissue, which worsens the cyst or damages healthy ovarian tissue. Women with PCOS might face a severe problem with conceiving due to their hormonal imbalance, where medications, lifestyle management is not helping to solve infertility. For these women, IVF (In vitro fertilisation) is the safest option available to conceive.

Here in Medicover, with its international standards, state of the art facilities and with the latest technology provides patients with individualistic care. There is a team of highly experienced and internationally certified in-house doctors who help patients dealing with different types of fertility problems.

FAQs

Q) Can you ovulate with an ovarian cyst?

A) Well, the very question that “can you ovulate with an ovarian cyst?” has a straightforward answer that cysts like the polycystic ovary are associated with irregular ovulation as ovulation problems account for about 25% of all cases of female infertility.

Q) Can you get pregnant with cyst on ovary?

A) An ovarian cyst does not usually affect a woman’s ability to conceive, but the only condition in which a cyst is linked with difficulty in getting pregnant is polycystic ovary syndrome.

Q) How soon after ovarian cyst removal can you get pregnant?

A) It is recommended by doctors that you should wait until your incision is fully healed before resuming intercourse, including other physical activities such as exercise. It may take anywhere between 3-5 days to several weeks.

Q) Can a cyst stop you from getting pregnant?

A) Ovarian cyst usually doesn’t affect a woman’s ability to conceive. If you were pregnant before, there’s a good chance that you can still be pregnant. Only women linked with PCOS, endometriomas can be linked with difficulty in conceiving.

Q) Can ovarian cysts cause infertility?

A) Most ovarian cysts do not cause infertility. Cysts that become infected and cause a pelvic infection can sometimes lead to infertility due to scarring of the fallopian tube. However, this condition is very rare. Ovarian cysts that contain endometriosis can be associated with infertility.

Q) Does ovarian cyst removal affect fertility?

A) Yes! In most of the cases the surgical treatment of ovarian cyst affects infertility as it invariably damages the healthy eggs.

Q) Do ovarian cyst causes infertility?

A) Depends on the type of cyst. Infertility is usually diagnosed after a couple has been unable to get pregnant even after 12 months. Ovarian cysts that contain endometriomas and polycystic ovaries may be associated with infertility.

Q) Can you get pregnant with large ovarian cyst?

A) Functional cysts usually do not affect fertility unless they are very large. However it should also be noted that women who have polycystic ovarian syndrome can experience fertility challenges too.

Q) Will para-ovarian cyst affect pregnancy?

A) If a woman is trying to conceive and has a paraovarian cyst, and it is big enough, a doctor might recommend getting it removed laparoscopically as it might be difficult to conceive with a paraovarian cyst, and these cysts do not get affected by birth control pills.

Q) Will ovarian torsion affect pregnancy?

A) Women who are treated with fertility drugs develop ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome and are at higher risk of ovarian torsion during pregnancy than those who do not become pregnant. Ovarian torsion during pregnancy can cause extreme pain, and it should be removed, otherwise can cause haemorrhage or necrosis.

(*necrosis – Death of most or all of the cells in an organ or tissue, due to failure of blood supply)

Q) I have dermoid cyst; will it affect my pregnancy?

A) The course of pregnancy of patients with dermoid cysts is favourable. The cysts should be managed conservatively if possible, with routine ultrasound follow up during pregnancy since complications are extremely rare.

Q) Tissues from one of my ovaries is removed due to cyst. Can I still get pregnant?

A) If the other ovary is intact and if there is no problem in ovulating, then a woman should not have any problem in conceiving.

Q) What are the chances of a successful IUI with a cyst?

A) When a couple is recommended IUI treatment, it is advisable not do it in the presence of a simple cyst because during ovulation induction, It will be difficult to differentiate between an actual growing follicle and the clear cyst. So, a cyst might be misdiagnosed as a follicle, and exact timing of IUI might go wrong.

References

1) https://www.todaysparent.com/getting-pregnant/trying-to-conceive/fertility-myths-that-are-hurting-your-chances-of-getting-pregnant/
2) https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/ovarian-cysts/expert-answers/ovarian-cysts-and-infertility/faq-20057806
3) https://www.beingtheparent.com/ovarian-cysts-affect-pregnancy/
4) https://www.romper.com/p/how-do-you-get-pregnant-if-you-have-ovarian-cyst-expert-explains-71880
5) http://natural-fertility-info.com/chocolate-cysts.html
6) https://www.pregnancybirthbaby.org.au/pcos-and-pregnancy
7) http://www.ivflite.org/article.asp?issn=2348-2907;year=2015;volume=2;issue=3;spage=99;epage=101;aulast=Shah
8) https://trmbaby.com/library/conditions/ovarian-cysts/
9) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19554342
10) https://www.steadyhealth.com/topics/dermoid-cyst-and-pregnancy