Has anyone had a bartholin gland removal? - Women's Health

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Has anyone had a bartholin gland removal?

HBG217 profile image

Hi all! Sorry for the long message! I’m looking to see if anyone’s been in same position as me or for some advice really...

I’ve had a bit of a nightmare the last 14 months. I’ve had a vulval cyst which grows in size to the point in becomes too painful to sit, have sex and do anything above a slow walk.

I have had 4 ops now where it has been drained by excision, marsupialisation (twice) and word balloon catheter. Each time it returns. It’s been exhausting to be honest. I have endo as well which doesn’t help but that luckily has not been too bad recently.

My previous hospital told me after my 1st operation that it wasn’t a recurring bartholin gland cyst, but a rare mesothelial cyst. This was confirmed by MRI & histology.

Fast forward to now. Moved home in last few months and it recurred during that time. I had my last surgery, an I&D and word balloon catheter placed with the new hospital who are convinced the last recurrence was a bartholin gland cyst. I have given all my gynae records from previous hospital confirming the other cyst. So they have ordered a pelvic MRI with contrast which I’m having next week.

Long story short.. I am sort of hoping they’re right - at least this way if it is the bartholin gland I can push to have it removed. My gynae is pretty reluctant to do a gland removal as apparently it’s a horrible recovery. But, the thought of this recurring all the time and my future being lots of smaller operations is just too much.

Has anyone had their gland removed? How was the recovery?

Also I’ve had a MRI without contrast - what is one like with contrast?

Is anyone in a similar position to me and unsure of their options or just has some advice for me as I’m really at a loss at the moment!

Thanks all so much!

5 Replies
wobblybee profile image
wobblybeeAdministrator

Many years ago I recall having a cyst myself, I was a lot younger, reluctant to see my GP, and luckily after a time it subsided. But I remember it was very painful.

I’ve had an MRI with contrast, although it was for Neurology, and the only real difference I noticed was a cannula in my arm, I didn’t have any after effects.

HBG217 profile image
HBG217 in reply to wobblybee

Thanks for replying! And that’s reassuring you had no after effects. ☺️

Hi hun, I wanted to let you know I’m in the same boat as you. The first cyst burst and I’ve had 2 incisions on the bartholin cyst and as well a marsupialization in the fall last year. All 3 times it has come back and now I have my fifth cyst since may of 2020. I have decided to go ahead and proceed with surgery for removing the gland completely. These things hurt so badly I wouldn’t wish it on anyone. I hope you find some relief and it gets better for you as well. I wish I knew what causes them. Best of luck to you!

HBG217 profile image
HBG217 in reply to Sarahbarn93

Oh gosh it sounds like you’ve really been through the mill of it too! Thinking of you. Let me know how the surgery goes. Is it any time soon for you? Mine have been determined to be embryonic so they need to figure out a surgical management plan. But as you say - wouldn’t wish the pain on anyone. Take care and I hope it resolves soon for you 🤞

Sarahbarn93 profile image
Sarahbarn93 in reply to HBG217

My doctor doesn’t want to proceed with removing the gland since I’m young and I guess it will cause more issues than helping the situation. So, my next options are inserting a word catheter which I am getting done sometime next week. It stays in for about 6 weeks so I’m really hoping that it works. If that doesn’t work, I’ll need to have surgery for removing the cyst wall which sounds much better to me, but I have to wait and see. I’m going to the obgyn like once a month to two months dealing with these. I just want relief 😩 let me know how it goes for you. It’s nice chatting with someone who has been through it as well. I think bartholin cysts aren’t as common as I thought and I read only 2% of women get them in their lifetime. Isn’t that crazy?!?!?

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