Lying next to the vagina, the Bartholin's glands are not normally noticeable or visible. However, if the Bartholin's gland duct becomes blocked, a Bartholin's cyst may occur. Although it's not always clear why a blockage forms in the duct, it may happen if bacteria is present or if the area is inflamed.
When a Bartholin's cyst occurs, a fluid filled lump will be present. Although the cyst may be small in size, it can swell fairly rapidly. Normally, the cyst itself does not cause too much pain, although discomfort may occur if it grows to a significant size.
However, if the Bartholin's cyst becomes infected, an abscess may occur at the site. This can result in further swelling, increased inflammation and a considerable amount of pain. While a Bartholin's cyst may resolve without treatment, if an abscess develops, medical intervention may be needed.
Often, a course of antibiotics will cure an infected Bartholin's gland or abscess. By targeting the bacteria, the medication will effectively rid the body of the foreign substance, thus allowing it to heal. However, if the abscess is particularly large, it may need to be drained prior to medication being prescribed.
If these treatment methods aren't effective, surgery can be performed. During the operation, surgeons will drain fluid and pus from the infected abscess and make an incision in the overlying skin. This should effectively resolve symptoms and prevent future Bartholin's cysts and abscesses from occurring.
Although medical intervention may sometimes be required, Bartholin cyst home treatment can be extremely effective. If the cyst occurs without a subsequent abscess, there is good chance that it can be managed without taking medication. Instead, Bartholin cyst home treatment can be used to minimize discomfort and promote healing.
For example, taking over-the-counter medications, such as ibuprofen, paracetamol or aspirin may help to reduce any pain caused by a Bartholin's cyst. In addition to this, regular warm baths may help to reduce inflammation and may allow the cyst to burst. When engaging in Bartholin cyst home treatment, women may also find that applying a warm compress to the affected area helps the cyst to resolve itself more quickly.
However, it's important to monitor Bartholin cyst home treatment carefully. If you're unable to take certain painkillers due to other medical conditions, for example, alternative medical intervention may be more appropriate.
While Bartholin cyst home treatment is often recommended, it is important to make sure that the lump is a Bartholin's cyst prior to commencing treatment. Any lumps which occur should be diagnosed by a medical professional to ensure that they don't require alternative treatment.
Other conditions, such as cancer, may present as a small lump at first. If this is not treated quickly by a medical professional, the patient's prognosis may worsen. Due to this, it's vital that patients obtain a diagnosis from a physician before beginning Bartholin cyst home treatment.
In addition to this, patients should be aware of when to seek help if Bartholin cyst home treatment isn't working. While most Bartholin's cysts will respond to home treatment, in some cases an abscess may still develop.
As the infection associated with an abscess can spread quickly, patients will want to seek medical help as soon as possible. If antibiotics are prescribed, they may take a few days to take effect so it's important to obtain them as early as possible. As an abscess can be extremely painful and can also cause a general feeling of lethargy, fever and nausea, it is not advisable to delay medical treatment in the hope that Bartholin cyst home treatment will work.
While Bartholin's cysts can be uncomfortable, and painful if infected, they normally don't present a serious medical problem. Bartholin cyst home treatment is likely to be effective in most cases, assuming that an abscess does not develop on the Bartholin's gland.
While Bartholin cyst home treatment may be preferable for the patient, if a Bartholin's cyst fails to heal or continues to recur, medical intervention may be necessary in order to reduce swelling, minimize symptoms and prevent the condition from becoming chronic.