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Excision of a Bartholin's Cyst


A Bartholin's (bar-thuh-lin's) cyst excision is surgery to remove the cyst. There is one Bartholin gland on each side of the labia. The labia are the large skin folds on each side of your vagina. A Bartholin's cyst is a fluid-filled sac in one of the Bartholin's glands. The fluid inside the cyst may get infected. You may have pain in your labia because of your cyst. Or you may have painful sex. Caregivers may only need to open and drain the cyst.

Picture of the anatomy of the female perineum


  • Medicines:
    • Keep a written list of what medicines you take and when and why you take them. Bring the list of your medicines or the pill bottles when you see your caregivers. Learn why you take each medicine. Ask your caregiver for information about your medicines. Do not take any medicines without first talking to caregivers.
    • Always take your medicine as directed by caregivers. Call your caregiver if you think your medicines are not helping or if you feel you are having side effects. Do not quit taking it until you discuss it with your caregiver. If you are taking antibiotics (an-ti-bi-ah-tiks), take them until they are all gone even if you feel better.
    • If you are taking medicine that makes you drowsy, do not drive or use heavy equipment.
  • How do I care for the wound?
    • If your cyst was opened and drained: A small piece of gauze may be put in your incision (cut) so that it can drain. Ask your caregiver when you can take out the gauze packing. If the bandage over the incision gets wet put on a clean dry one.
    • If your cyst was removed, ask your caregiver how to clean the area where the cyst was removed.
  • Following are ways to lessen the pain.
    • Put warm, moist towels on the area or sit in a tub of clean warm water. This helps lessen the pain. .
    • Sitting on a donut pad may help your pain. This pad may be bought at a drug store.
    • It may hurt to walk at first. This is normal and will get easier with time.
  • You may want to use panty liner pads to keep from staining your underwear.
  • Ask your caregiver when it is ok to have sex.


  • Your incision (cut) has pain, redness, swelling, drainage, or bleeding that is getting worse. This may mean you have an infection.
  • You have tenderness, pain, or swelling in the folds of skin around your vagina (called labia).
  • You have pain with sex.
  • You have questions or concerns about your cyst removal or drainage.


  • You have trouble breathing all of a sudden.
  • You have a fever.

The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.