What does a Bartholin cyst feel like to touch?

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Hi everyone

I have a grape sized lump just inside the entrance to my vagina. It feels very hard, almost rock hard and quite painful to touch. The hardness also extends to my anus.

My doctor thinks it's more than likely a bartholin cyst but because of the extended hardness, she has referred my to the hospital to have it checked out. 

I also have an anal fissure which she says could be infected which may be causing the thickening of tissue around my anus.

Please can anyone tell me if these type of cysts are usually this hard? I always envisage cysts to be soft, fluid filled sacs?

Thanks in advance 

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6 Replies

  • Posted

    hi lorraine

    yes they feel firm almost full firm.... Like a grape or bigger.. 

    mine was like a walnut size..

    but hot table salt baths unclogged the pore with mine and the fluid was released 

    normally by inserting thumb just inside and feeling it between thumb and forefinger 

    jay xx

  • Posted

    Hi Lorraine, 

    I've been to see two doctors now and I'm going back on Wednesday for a third opinion before they refer me to the hospital. 

    Each doctor thinks that I do have some kind of cyst. Mine is the size of a walnut and also extends down towards my anus. It didn't used to hurt but as it's enlarged, is become very tender and sore when sitting down. Mine is also very hard and I can't decide whether the outside feels squishy or smooth and hard! But what I am certain of is that I can literally 'grab' it and move it a little. 

    Let us know how you get on, it's disheartening when doctors sound unsure! 

    Take care 

  • Posted

    Hi Jay and Red

    Thanks for your replies. I'm sorry you are both going through this nightmare aswell. It is such a worry.

    My hospital appointment was supposed to be this Friday at the colorectal dept but they rang yesterday and changed it to next Wednesday. I literally cried. I just want to get in there asap and find out what is going on.

    I managed to get in to see a different GP this morning. She did a full rectal and vaginal examination and said she thinks I might have a rectovaginal fistula.

    I have a deep open sore/fissure on my anus which channels internally through my perineum and ends in a big hard lump in my vagina which would also explain the thickening of my perineum. 

    I actually read about rectovaginal fistulas on Google yesterday and thought that sounded very much like my symptoms. Other sufferers also mentioned that they were initially told they might have a Bartholins cyst. 

    The doctor said it still needs to checked out at the hospital as a matter of urgency to rule out other causes so I'll just have to wait and see what happens on Wednesday.

    Good luck with your doctors appointment, Red I hope you get a definitive diagnosis very soon. 

    I'll post back if I have any news x

    • Posted

      Hi lorriane

      no ... i am not going through it now, mine was years ago..

      it never came back ..

      just had the table salt hot baths 

      it unclogged pore and drained by itself back then

      good luck lorriane

      big hugs 

      jay xx

  • Posted


    I also got one that very firm so my doctor has referred me to a specialist just to make sure it isn't cancer. This is the third time this one comes back. I know it's been theee years please tell me what happened. Very scared 

  • Posted

    Hi everyone, 

    I found a small pea size lump shortly after giving birth to my first child 4 years ago. After a year with it I saw my GP who referred me on to have it surgically removed. I didn't show for the surgery as I looked on internet feeds about these cyst and everything I read said it would come back and I would have a ton of scare tissue as well as the actual gland being removed eventually if it kept reoccurring. It's now 4 years later and the cyst is still there but just a tad bigger then a golf ball, it's totally painless and has always been. I tried epsons salts with hot and cold water but it's just not working. However this week for some reason it's has swelled even bigger and has gone incredibly hard more so then before.

    im going to call the GP this afternoon and I have a feeling I will have to have it done this time but I am so scared of the outcome of it reoccurring and losing my glands, but I need it done as since I have had this I have had nothing but problems with having painless sex, lubrication, general sitting down, using sanitary items and even wearing knickers. Just worried, I'm 25 and I literally suffer terribly in so many way because of this thing, I just don't want it getting worse.

    any ideas or info please let me know, I'm beyond desperate 




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