Removed my ovary in my 20s

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I've just had a unilateral oophorectomy following a newly discovered dermoid cyst. Within the span of a week I went from believing I was relatively fine to having one of my ovaries removed as it was far too damaged due to the cyst.

I feel like everything has happened within the blink of an eye and I don't know how best to process it. The doctors said that there aren't any particular side effects of a unilateral oophorectomy apart from a small reduction in fertility. I already have PCOS so this news did worry me a bit. There doesn't seem to be much information about a unilateral oophorectomy online. I'm afraid of losing my other ovary given that I am still in my early 20s and already have lost one.

I've been reading this forum and found it comforting and wanted to share my experience. Everybody I know that went through something similar is twice my age which makes me feel like they cannot relate to me.

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  • Posted

    Greetings Roberta !

    Thank you for sharing your story during what I can only imagine is a very difficult time for you. Although I do not suffer with PCOS, I certainly can relate to your concerns as my own difficulties with ovarian cysts began during my early 20's.

    I hope you will continue to seek out more information both online and through your physician. If you search online under PCOS and Oophorectomy you may have better luck finding others who are dealing with similar issues.

    From your posting, it seems as though you weren't given very much information prior to your surgery. I hope you were able to get a second opinion before making the decision to move forward with removing the entire ovary? If not, I urge you to keep asking questions and educate yourself as much as possible as your journey is far from over.

    Best of luck, Roberta. Be good to yourself and take as much time as possible to heal!

    You are not alone!

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    • Posted

      Hi and thank you for your reply. I really appreciate hearing from someone who started experiencing this in their 20s.

      Everything happened so quickly that I barely had time to wrap my head around what was happening, much less ask questions. But it was made clear to me that the cyst had to go, and it could not be removed wholly without removing the ovary too since it was within it.

      I did speak to another doctor who said the same thing - in fact, I spoke to several doctors who first thought my ovary could be saved, but then learnt that the cyst was too large (15cm) and located in the ovary, so there was not much that could be done.

      If I may ask, how did your journey progress?

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  • Posted

    Roberta, your reply indicates that you did everything possible to confirm that the decision to remove the ovary was indeed the right one given the circumstances. Life always seems to throw us curve balls when we least expect them.

    As I stated before, I do not have PCOS, I just had ovaries that continued to produce cysts both large and small. Dealing with endometriosis and cysts became a lifetime reality which still plagues me to this day. Decades after having had a radical hysterectomy, I was recently informed that cysts have formed on ovarian tissue that was left behind?!? WTH?!

    IMO, the female body remains largely a mystery to the medical profession. It is extremely important that you remain diligent with regard to your health. Question and research everything you are told as you are your own best advocate!

    Losing one ovary should not have a tremendous impact upon your life right now, but do continue to ask questions regarding the future. Through research and participation in various forums available on the net, I hope you will be able to keep your physician on her toes regarding the latest medicine has to offer!

    Best wishes! and remember . . . HAPPINESS IS A CHOICE!

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