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Excision Of A Bartholin's Cyst


A Bartholin's cyst excision is surgery to remove or drain a Bartholin's cyst. A Bartholin's cyst is a lump on your labia. Inside the lump is a sac filled with fluid. The labia are the skin folds on each side of your vagina.

Picture of the anatomy of the female perineum


You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your caregivers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment.


The risks of having your Bartholin's cyst removed or opened and drained are very small. There is a chance that you may bleed more or get an infection. These problems are usually easy to treat. You may have pain with sex or when walking if the cyst is not removed or drained. Call your caregiver if you are worried or have questions about your medicine or care.


  • Vital Signs: This includes taking your temperature, blood pressure, pulse (counting your heartbeat), and respirations (counting your breaths). To take your blood pressure, a cuff is put on your arm and tightened. The cuff is attached to a machine, which will give your blood pressure reading. Caregivers may listen to your heart and lungs by using a stethoscope. Your vital signs may be taken so caregivers can see how you are doing.
  • Consent Form: This is a legal piece of paper that gives your caregiver permission to do tests and treatments. It tells you exactly what will be done to you. It also tells you how the tests or treatment will help and what risks are possible. You or a close family member will be asked to sign this form. Be sure all your questions have been answered before you sign this form.
  • Gown: A hospital gown is needed so that your caregivers can easily check and treat you. Put your gown on so that it opens in the back. When you feel better you may be able to wear your own gown or pajamas.
  • Call Button: You can use a call button when you need your caregiver. Pain or wanting to get out of bed are good reasons to call.
  • Pulse oximeter: A pulse oximeter is a device that measures the amount of oxygen in your blood. A cord with a clip or sticky strip is placed on your finger, ear, or toe. The other end of the cord is hooked to a machine. Never turn the pulse oximeter or alarm off. An alarm will sound if your oxygen level is low or cannot be read.
  • Blood Tests: You may need blood taken for tests. The blood can be taken from a vein in your hand or from the bend in your elbow. It will be tested to see how your body is handling your illness. You may need to have blood drawn more than once.
  • IV: An IV is a tube placed in your vein for giving medicine or liquids. This tube will be capped or connected to tubing and liquid.
  • Anesthesia: This is medicine to make you comfortable during surgery. You may be awake or completely asleep. You and your caregiver will decide which type of anesthesia is best for you. The different types of anesthesia are:
    • Local Anesthesia: This is a shot of medicine put into the skin where you will have surgery. It is used to dull the pain.
    • General Anesthesia: This is medicine given as a liquid in your IV. Or, it may be given as a gas through a facemask or tube placed in your mouth and throat. This tube is called an endotracheal tube or ET tube. You will be completely asleep during surgery.
  • During the Procedure:
    • You will be taken to the room where your procedure will be done. Caregivers will help you get comfortable on the bed. A belt may be put over your legs for safety. Ask for more blankets if you are cold. With your feet in stirrups, the area between your legs will be washed with soap and water. This soap may make your skin yellow, but it will be cleaned off later. Sheets will be put over you.
    • Your caregiver may take out the cyst or open it to let it drain. The incision will either be sewn closed or left open to heal from the inside out. A bandage will be put on the incision.
  • After the Procedure: You may be taken to a recovery room and stay there until you wake up. Or you may be able to go home or be taken back to your room.
  • Activity: Your caregiver will tell you when it is OK to get out of bed. Call your caregiver the first time you get up. If you ever feel weak or dizzy, sit or lie down right away. Then call your caregiver.
  • Drains: You may have a thin rubber tube coming out of your skin next to your incision. It will drain fluid that may be in your incision. The drain will be taken out when the incision stops draining. Instead of a drain, gauze packing may be placed in the incision. The fluid collects in the packing and will be removed later. A bandage will be put on the incision.
  • Medicines:
    • Antibiotics: This medicine may be given to help you fight infection caused by bacteria. Antibiotics may be given by IV, as a shot, or by mouth.
    • Pain Medicine: Caregivers may give you medicine to lessen your pain. This medicine may be given in your IV, as a shot, or by mouth. Tell caregivers if the pain does not go away or comes back.
    • Anti-Nausea Medicine: This medicine may be given to calm your stomach and control vomiting. The medicine will help stop vomiting and will allow you to drink fluids. Drinking liquids will keep you from becoming dehydrated (losing too much body fluid).
    • Stool Softeners: You may be given stool softeners to keep you from getting constipated. Stool softeners make your bowel movement softer so you do not need to strain when you have a bowel movement.

Further information

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