There are 2 types of surgery used to remove ovarian cysts:
These are usually carried out under general anaesthetic.
Most cysts can be removed using laparoscopy. This is a type of keyhole surgery. Small cuts are made in your tummy and gas is blown into the pelvis to allow the surgeon to access your ovaries.
A laparoscopy is a procedure where a camera (a laparoscope) is inserted into the pelvis via a small cut near the belly button so the surgeon can see your internal organs. The surgeon then removes the cyst through the small cuts in your skin.
After the cyst has been removed, the cuts will be closed using dissolvable stitches.
A laparoscopy is preferred because it causes less pain and has a quicker recovery time. You'll usually be able to go home on the same day or the following day.
If your cyst is particularly large, or there is a chance it could be cancerous, a laparotomy may be recommended.
During a laparotomy, a single, larger cut is made in your tummy to give the surgeon better access to the cyst.
The whole cyst and ovary may be removed and sent to a laboratory to check whether it's cancerous. Stitches or staples will be used to close the incision.
You may need to stay in hospital for a few days after the procedure.