“Should I have surgery?” is the real question underlying this question, which patients want to ask in fact. I’m sorry, but the only treatment available for dermoid cysts is surgery. Onion juice or something like that is useless :). Between you and me, onion juice do no work in any types of ovarian cysts.:)

The answer to the quesstion “Do you need to have a surgery immediately?” is “No” in brief. But you should not be too late, and should have a surgery within 1 to 2 months after the finalization of the diagnosis at the latest.

The most important reason for that is the possibility of torsion (ie rotation around its own axis). It leads to a very tumultuous scene in the clinical context, and then you need to have an immediate surgery.

All surgeries that have not been planned in advance carry risk. And they are problematic. Therefore, you must ideally have a surgery in a planned and programmed manner under elective conditions.

In fact, dermoid cysts do not grow too fast. An interesting study conducted in the UK was published in 2010 (1). Some of the 323 dermoid cysts detected in 289 women were followed-up for a period of 7 years.

In the literature, the possibility of detecting dermoid cyst in the both ovaries ranges from 10 to 15%. Also in this study, 13% bilateral dermoid cyst was found, as a result confirming the literature. For 93 women among those diagnosed with dermoid cyst—actual topic of the research—a conservative attitute as adopted, i.e. they waitied for surgery for a period not shorter than 3 months (1).

The average waiting period was reported as 12.6 months. The risk of complication was found to be low. But ultimately, 1/3 of the patients had to be operated. The reason for this was mostly abdominal pain, etc. A figure given by the study is very important: dermoid cyst (Mature Cystic Teratoma) was found to grow averagely 1.67cm per year.

In conclusion, surgery is not too urgent but it would be better for your health if you have a surgery within a short period in a planned and programmed manner. 🙂

References: (1) Hoo WL, Yazbek J, Holland T, Mavrelos D, Tong EN, Jurkovic D. Expectant management of ultrasonically diagnosed ovarian dermoid cysts: is it possible to predict outcome? Ultrasound Obstet Gynecol. 2010; 36(2):235-240