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I'm 24 and starting getting bartholin cysts just over a year ago. It has recurred at least 6 or 7 times, and I have had an Incision and Drainage performed twice, one under local anesthetic and once under general. I can't stress enough, GET THE GENERAL! The needle with the anesthetic was BEYOND painful, and I'm not ashamed to admit I screamed bloody murder when they cut the thing open! Hands down, the most painful experience of my life. With the general, I experienced zero pain and no memory of the procedure.
Yesterday, to my horror I felt the familiar hardened bump start to rise. Today at work, where I sit at a desk all day, the pain went from tolerably uncomfortable to unbearable. After being driven to the ER and speaking with a doctor, I decided to forgo the surgery, or at least postpone it, and give home remedies one last try. In my searches through forums and websites, I saw the same remedy mentioned a few times: Phoebe's Cure. I decided I had nothing to lose, drove to the pharmacy, and picked up the necessary ingredients: a bottle of calamine lotion, a bottle of witch hazel, a bottle of tea tree oil, and a roll of gauze. At this point, it was about 5:00 in the afternoon. I drove home, drew myself a hot bath and added Epson salts, and sat for about 20 minutes. When I got out, I soaked the gauze in a mixture of 6 oz of calamine lotion, 2 teaspoons of witch hazel, and 2 teaspoons of tea tree oil. The recipe actually only asks for 1 teaspoon of the latter two ingredients, but at that point I was almost hysterical with pain so I figured, go big or go home. I soaked the gauze in the mixture, then covered the cyst (likely an abscess at this point) with the gauze, held in place with my underwear. I left this for about 40 minutes, swapped for a hot compress for about 10 minutes, then applied another soaked gauze for about 30 minutes. At this point, I couldn't even help crying from the pain. I took a painkiller, and drew myself another hot bath, this time using table salt instead of Epson salts. I stayed in again for about 20 minutes, then restarted the cycle of changing the soaked gauze every 30 minutes or so. I could feel the cyst growing in size and getting even harder, and I noticed the mixture in the gauze was causing some stinging. At around 9:00, about 3 and a half hours after I drew the first bath, (WARNING, this is gross! Please do not read past this point if you are squeamish!) I was lying on the couch and suddenly felt liquid drip down. I put some mild pressure on the gauze, then went to the bathroom to see what was going on. Full disclosure, I'm also on my period right now, making it extremely difficult for me to tell exactly what was going on. I pulled the gauze away and sure enough there was a large spot of pus about as big as a Canadian Twoonie. I wanted to cry in relief, but didn't let myself believe I was out of the woods yet. I swapped for a new gauze again, left it, checked again, and sure enough, more pus. I put pressure on the spot where it seemed to be originating from with the gauze, and when I pulled it away, more pus. I cried with absolute relief.
I have never, ever found a home remedy that was even remotely effective for this ailment or any other. I am BLOWN AWAY at how effective this was! Let me preface this by saying I'm not a medical professional by any means, but I believe this worked by bringing the pus to the surface of the abscess until it finally burst. The originating spot of the pus was the spot that had become the hardest and probably the most painful point on the abscess over the three and a half hours of changing gauzes.
If you experience painful bartholin cysts or abscesses, PLEASE give this a try! Absolutely worth it!
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