Skip to main content

Bartholin's cyst (Abscess, Bartholin's)

Overview

The Bartholin's (BAHR-toe-linz) glands are located on each side of the vaginal opening. These glands secrete fluid that helps lubricate the vagina.

Sometimes the openings of these glands become obstructed, causing fluid to back up into the gland. The result is relatively painless swelling called a Bartholin's cyst. If the fluid within the cyst becomes infected, you may develop a collection of pus surrounded by inflamed tissue (abscess).


A Bartholin's cyst or abscess is common. Treatment of a Bartholin's cyst depends on the size of the cyst, how painful the cyst is and whether the cyst is infected.

Sometimes home treatment is all you need. In other cases, surgical drainage of the Bartholin's cyst is necessary. If an infection occurs, antibiotics may be helpful to treat the infected Bartholin's cyst.

Symptoms

If you have a small, noninfected Bartholin's cyst, you may not notice it. If the cyst grows, you might feel a lump or mass near your vaginal opening. Although a cyst is usually painless, it can be tender.

A full-blown infection of a Bartholin's cyst can occur in a matter of days. If the cyst becomes infected, you may experience:

  • A tender, painful lump near the vaginal opening
  • Discomfort while walking or sitting
  • Pain during intercourse
  • Fever

A Bartholin's cyst or abscess typically occurs on only one side of the vaginal opening.

When to see a doctor

Call your doctor if you have a painful lump near the opening of your vagina that doesn't improve after two or three days of self-care — for instance, soaking the area in warm water (sitz bath). If the pain is severe, make an appointment with your doctor right away.

Also call your doctor promptly if you find a new lump near your vaginal opening and you're older than 40. Although rare, such a lump may be a sign of a more serious problem, such as cancer.

Causes

Experts believe that the cause of a Bartholin's cyst is a backup of fluid. Fluid may accumulate when the opening of the gland (duct) becomes obstructed, perhaps caused by infection or injury.

A Bartholin's cyst can become infected, forming an abscess. A number of bacteria may cause the infection, including Escherichia coli (E. coli) and bacteria that cause sexually transmitted infections such as gonorrhea and chlamydia.

Complications

A Bartholin's cyst or abscess may recur and again require treatment.

Prevention

There's no way to prevent a Bartholin's cyst. However, safer sex practices — in particular, using condoms — and good hygiene habits may help to prevent infection of a cyst and the formation of an abscess.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Cold Urticaria

Overview Cold allergy or in medical terms called cold urticaria is the reaction of the skin to cold which causes itching to appear and the skin becomes reddish in color. The severity of cold allergy symptoms that appear on each person is different. Some people can lose consciousness, experience very low blood pressure, and even the worst can cause death. Ages are the age most often affected by cold allergies, but usually will disappear completely within a few years. Symptoms Usually cold allergy symptoms appear when the skin is exposed to cold water or cold weather (below 4 degrees Celsius). Cold allergies are also more at risk of appearing in conditions that are windy and damp. The following are some cold allergy symptoms that can occur. Hands feel swollen when holding cold objects. Itchy lesions appear on the area of ​​the skin exposed to cold air. The lips and throat feel swollen when eating cold food or drinks. Reddish skin. Allergic reactions are usually most seve

COVID-19 (coronavirus) Quarantine, Self-Isolation and Social Distancing

COVID-19 (coronavirus) quarantine, self-isolation and social distancing Learn the difference between quarantine and self-isolation amid the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic — and why it matters. You've read about people self-quarantining, social distancing, or isolating themselves during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. You may be confused about the various terms and wonder what you should be doing. These terms describe approaches for limiting the spread of disease during epidemics and pandemics:   Social distancing.  Keeping space between yourself and other people outside your household to prevent the spread of disease. Quarantine.  Separating people and limiting movement of people who have or may have been exposed to the disease to see if they become ill. Isolation.  Separating people who are ill from others to keep the disease from spreading. Social distancing   You're likely practicing social distancing if there's ongoing community spre

Ways to fight coronavirus transmission at home

Ways to fight coronavirus transmission at home Used properly, most common household disinfectants will kill the virus that causes COVID-19. Doctors and researchers are gaining a greater understanding about the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak and how the virus can spread. Public health messages emphasize the importance of frequent, thorough hand-washing and social distancing to slow the spread of  COVID-19 .   You can also take steps in your home to keep the virus from spreading. No special supplies are required. You likely already have what you need. How is COVID-19 spread?   The virus that causes  COVID-19  can be spread by contact with someone who has  COVID-19 , as well as contact with surfaces or objects that person has touched. When someone with  COVID-19  sneezes or coughs, respiratory droplets are released into the air. Droplets typically don't travel far — no more than 6 feet (about 2 meters). The virus may stay on surfaces from hours to days.