Dermoid cyst, laparotomy, lots of pain! Recovery tips anyone?

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Hi all, 

About 2 months ago I had an ultrasound scan which revealed a 12cm x 8cm thin walled bi-lobed cyst on my left ovary. I had been having lots of problems in the 9 months before this discovery! Extreme pain on the lower left side of my abdomen, often stopping me from functioning. I was repeatedly told it was a urinary tract infection, IBS or just period cramp! For at least 6 weeks I had to do constant urine tests and blood tests before I pushed for the ultrasound. 

My surgeon advised that he would initally go in with the laparoscope to have a look and hopefully aspirate and remove it this way. 

I went in for my surgery 5 days ago and things did not go to plan. He found that half of the cyst was solid (dermoid) and the other half fluid. Because of this he had to switch to laparotomy and sliced me across my bikini line to remove it. 

The first few days in hospital were horrendous. I couldn't eat or sleep, my anxiety was through the roof! The morphine made me vomit badly to the point where I was constantly crying in pain. I was very uncomfortable and didn't urinate for 3 days, didn't poop until this morning! 

Since I have come home I am feeling much better, still in a lot of pain with wind and I have also started my period for the first time in 8 months! Trying to keep movement minimal. 

Was wondering if anyone had tips for recovery? I've been taking paracetamol (i'm intolerant to codeine etc) for the pain and a hot water bottle has helped cramp immensely! 

This forum has helped me loads, been wonderful to read other ladies stories of similar problems, it's good to know I'm not alone! 

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  • Posted

    Hi Jadeybug. You should start to feel better soon if you've had a bowel movment. If it's difficult try lactulose, or docusate stool softener. Also suppositories helped me get moving! You will have a lot of wind or gas in your abdomen from the surgery, it's pumped in to help the surgeon see what's what inside you so he can operate! Short gentle walks round the house, (pottering) helps get things moving too. There will be some internal wounds and scarring which has to heal, plus outside stitches which may be pulling a bit as you heal. Eat small meals often, avoid large or greasy meals so your stomach can deal with it better. Plenty of fluids, I constantly sip weak caffeine free tea or warm drinks. I had similar op but laparoscopy so not quite such a big cut but still a bit sore and now tightening up at 11 days post op. Hope you soon feel better as I do. I'm 72 by the way. Pollyanna UK rolleyes
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    • Posted

      Hi Pollyanna smile 

      Thank you for your help! Going to get some lactulose tomorrow if I can, just glad i've been once. The gas has been killing me, especially the first 3 days when it moved into my chest and shoulders. Been taking short walks across the house every hour or so to try keep myself mobile! Will have to get some tea, i love english breakfast but the milk has been making me very windy. 

      Thank you so much, good to hear you are also healing well! 

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  • Posted


    I'm sorry to hear you hav been through the mill. I had a laparotomy on Wednesday my incision is from my belly button down. I had a tumour removed weighing 3.5 kilos n my left ovary n tube n some biopsies and washout. It's not been the best week

    I to hav experienced the wind n pain I take paracetamol and ibruprofen regularly. Some lactulose in the morning to help everything move. Windezz tablets peppermint water also. I move quite a lot as I find this helps with the discomfort. I was told to avoid red meat also. Xx

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    • Posted

      Aw Michelle! So sad to hear about this, 3.5 kilos is huge! Glad you've had it removed now though. 

      Thank you for your advice, i've been using rennie's peppermint tablets to help with the wind, i think most of the gas is gone now after a week. I can't take ibuprofen as i'm asthmatic but paracetamol has been a saviour, if only it was stronger! 

      I've stuck mainly to fruit and veg (with the occasional toffee muffin) to try help with the bowels as my laxatives say to not take them if your abdomen is sore or tender to the touch. 

      Much love xxx

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  • Posted

    I'm starting to panic as i'm getting very sharp stabbing pains on my right side that's coming and going. Feels like i'm being stabbed with a needle. Anyone know what this could be? 
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