Could Ovarian Cysts Be Causing Your Low Back Pain?

Could Ovarian Cysts Be Causing Your Low Back Pain?

Ovarian cysts form naturally, usually around the time you ovulate. These fluid-filled sacs typically don’t cause troublesome symptoms and go away on their own without treatment.

If you develop large cysts or multiple cysts, however, you might experience unpleasant symptoms, like pain. While it’s more common to experience abdominal pain, ovarian cysts could also be responsible for pain in your lower back.

At Signature Women’s Healthcare in Lawrenceville and Lithonia, Georgia, our OB/GYN physicians, Jacquline Hayles-Patterson, MD and Tyndal M. Jones, MD, diagnose and treat problematic gynecological issues, like ovarian cysts.

If you’re experiencing low back pain, keep reading to learn more about ovarian cysts, how they can trigger your pain, and what we can do to help. 

Ovarian cysts 101

Your ovaries play a big role in your menstrual cycle, breast development, and pregnancy. They’re responsible for producing the hormones estrogen and progesterone, and each month an ovary releases an egg as part of your normal cycle. 

Ovarian cysts develop for various reasons. Most of the time, they aren’t cause for concern, forming during normal menstrual cycle processes when you ovulate and an egg is released from the follicle. If the egg isn’t released, however, you might develop a follicular ovarian cyst.

Cysts vary in size, ranging from less than an inch to more than four inches. The development of problematic ovarian cysts may be triggered by: 

While adolescents and women of childbearing age commonly develop cysts, it’s less likely you’ll get them if you’re menopausal or pre-pubescent. 

Low back pain and ovarian cysts

Most of the time, if an ovarian cyst causes pain, you feel it in your lower abdomen. Although everyone is different, most women describe this abdominal pain as dull, mild, and intermittent. 

Recent studies, however, have shown that low back pain is more common than originally believed when it comes to ovarian cysts. In fact, nearly 45% of women with low back pain also had an ovarian cyst. 

Ovarian cysts are more likely to cause low back pain when they’re large. That’s because larger cysts can press on your tissues and organs, triggering pain or discomfort in your lower back.

This type of low back pain is most often described as dull and achy, but if the cyst ruptures, the pain may become sharp and severe. It is also usually accompanied by other symptoms, including: 

You may also feel the need to urinate more often than normal or have burning during urination if you have an ovarian cyst. Because these symptoms are shared with other conditions, it’s imperative to visit your gynecological provider for an accurate diagnosis.

Treating ovarian cysts

It’s important to keep in mind that most ovarian cysts go away on their own and don’t require medical intervention. If you have recurrent ovarian cysts, or if the ovarian cysts cause you pain, your Signature Women’s Healthcare OB/GYN might recommend hormonal contraceptives to stop cysts from developing. 

To address your pain or discomfort, your provider may also prescribe pain-relieving medications, like nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), and other pain-reducing techniques, like warm compresses. 

If you’re diagnosed with a large ovarian cyst or one that doesn’t go away on its own, your provider at Signature Women’s Healthcare provider might determine that surgical intervention is the best treatment option. Most surgeries for ovarian cysts leave your ovary intact; although rare, ovary removal is sometimes required. 

Find out if your low back pain could be caused by ovarian cysts by contacting the Signature Women’s Healthcare office nearest you. You can reach us at 678-380-1200 to schedule, or book an appointment online today.

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