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Pictures of bartholin cyst on labia: Bartholin’s Cysts, Treatment, Causes, Pictures, Symptoms, Popping & Drainage


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Milial cysts of the vulva,

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Cutaneous endometriosis of the vulva,

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Related information

Bartholin Gland Cyst | Michigan Medicine

Topic Overview

What are the Bartholin glands?

The Bartholin glands are two small organs under the skin in a woman’s genital area. They are on either side of the folds of skin (labia) that surround the vagina and urethra. Most of the time, you can’t feel or see these glands.

The Bartholin glands make a small amount of fluid that moistens the outer genital area, or vulva. This fluid comes out of two tiny tubes next to the opening of the vagina. These tubes are called Bartholin ducts.

What are Bartholin gland cysts?

If a Bartholin duct gets blocked, fluid builds up in the gland. The blocked gland is called a Bartholin gland cyst. (Sometimes it’s called a Bartholin duct cyst.) These cysts can range in size from a pea to a large marble. They usually grow slowly. If the Bartholin gland or duct gets infected, it’s called a Bartholin gland abscess.

Bartholin gland cysts are often small and painless. Some go away without treatment. But if you have symptoms, you might want treatment. If the cyst is infected, you will need treatment.

What causes a Bartholin gland cyst?

Things like an infection, thick mucus, or swelling can block a Bartholin gland duct and cause a cyst. The cyst can get bigger after sex, because the glands make more fluid during sex.

Infected Bartholin cysts are sometimes caused by sexually transmitted infections (STIs). You can lower your risk of STIs by using a condom when you have sex.

What are the symptoms?

You may not have any symptoms if the Bartholin gland cyst is small. But a large cyst or an infected cyst (abscess) can cause symptoms.

Symptoms of a cyst that is not infected include:

  • A painless lump in the vulva area.
  • Redness or swelling in the vulva area.
  • Discomfort when you walk, sit, or have sex.

Symptoms of an infected cyst include:

  • Pain that gets worse and makes it hard to walk, sit, or move around.
  • Fever and chills.
  • Swelling in the vulva area.
  • Drainage from the cyst.

How are Bartholin gland cysts diagnosed?

You may find a Bartholin gland cyst on your own, or your doctor may notice it during a physical exam. Unless it is causing symptoms, you may not know you have one.

An abscess is diagnosed based on signs of infection, such as fever or swelling, and pain in the vulva area.

In some cases, especially if you are older, your doctor may remove the cyst to make sure that it isn’t cancer or another problem.

How are they treated?

Some Bartholin gland cysts go away without treatment. You can take a nonprescription pain medicine such as ibuprofen (Advil or Motrin, for example) to relieve pain. To help healing, soak the area in a shallow, warm bath, or a sitz bath. Don’t have sex while a Bartholin cyst is healing.

If the cyst is infected, it may break open and start to heal on its own after 3 to 4 days. But if the cyst is painful, your doctor may drain it. You may also need to take antibiotics to treat the infection.

To keep the cyst from closing and filling up again, your doctor may put a small drainage tube with a small balloon at one end inside the cyst. The balloon is inflated inside the cyst to keep the cyst open. After the gland has healed, the tube and balloon are removed.

Sometimes a carbon dioxide laser or silver nitrate is used to prevent a cyst from growing back. For severe cysts that keep coming back, you may have surgery to remove the Bartholin gland and duct.

There is a procedure called marsupialization in which a pouch is created by making a cut over the cyst and stitching the sides together. This allows the cyst to drain.

Bartholin’s cyst: Causes, treatment, and symptoms

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A Bartholin’s cyst is a noncancerous lump that develops due to a blockage in the Bartholin’s glands.

The Bartholin’s glands sit between the vagina and the vulva and are not usually visible to the naked eye. They produce a fluid that helps reduce friction during sex.

Bartholin’s cysts are firm, tender masses that do not always cause pain. Although infectious agents are not responsible for causing the cysts to develop, bacteria can enter the fluid in them once they have formed. If this occurs, the cysts may become abscesses.

In the United States, Bartholin’s cysts are present in about 2% of people seeking gynecological care, according to the British Medical Journal.

In this article, we look at the symptoms, causes, and treatment of Bartholin’s cysts.

Bartholin’s cysts do not always cause pain. A person may have a cyst and not know about it until they undergo a routine examination by a doctor or have a consultation for other gynecological health concerns.

Major symptoms are not common. However, when symptoms do occur, they may include a slight lump in the labia. The cyst usually only develops in one of the two glands.

Cysts may not be noticeable at first, but they can sometimes have effects on the labia, causing one of the lips to become larger than the other.

A cyst is a closed sac-like structure full of liquid, air, or other substances.

Cysts can range in size from that of a lentil to a golf ball. Although Bartholin’s cysts cannot pass from person to person through sexual contact, gonorrhea or chlamydia may be an underlying cause.

Larger cysts are more likely to cause discomfort and pain in the vulva, especially during sexual intercourse, while walking, or when in a sitting position.

Bartholin’s cysts should not be a cause for concern in people of reproductive age.

However, after menopause, it is prudent to check the genitals for any lumps or cysts and seek consultation with a doctor about possible malignancies.

Sometimes, bacteria can enter the cyst fluid and cause a buildup of pus in the form of a Bartholin’s abscess. This abscess can be painful.

A doctor may prescribe broad spectrum antibiotics to counter the actions of the infectious agent that is creating the pus buildup.

The abscess can develop rapidly. A person may notice the following symptoms in the area around the abscess:

  • redness
  • tenderness
  • a sensation of heat from the area
  • pain during sexual activity
  • fever
  • rupturing and leakage

The Bartholin’s glands produce a lubricating fluid that helps reduce friction during sexual intercourse.

This fluid travels from the Bartholin’s glands down ducts into the lower part of the entrance to the vagina.

If there is a blockage of mucus in these ducts, the lubricant accumulates. This buildup causes the ducts to expand and a Bartholin’s cyst to form.

The reaction of the immune system to a bacterial infectious agent may cause the blockage and subsequent abscess. Examples of these agents include:

  • Neisseria gonorrhoeae, which causes gonorrhea, a disease that is transmissible via sexual contact
  • Chlamydia trachomatis, which causes chlamydia
  • Escherichia coli, which can affect the water supply and cause hemorrhagic colitis
  • Streptococcus pneumoniae, which can cause pneumonia and middle ear infections
  • Haemophilus influenzae, which can cause ear infections and respiratory infections

While doctors do not consider Bartholin’s cyst to result exclusively from sexual transmission, N. gonorrhoeae is among the most common pathogens that doctors isolate when testing the cysts.

The exact causes of duct blockage are often unclear, though bacteria have a role to play.

However, the following characteristics increase a person’s likelihood of developing a Bartholin’s cyst:

  • being sexually active
  • being between 20 and 30 years of age
  • having previously had a Bartholin’s cyst
  • having experienced physical trauma in the affected area
  • having undergone surgery of the vagina or vulva

If a Bartholin’s cyst is small and presents no symptoms, treatment may not be necessary. However, doctors are likely to ask the person to monitor the cyst and report on whether it increases in size or presents discomfort.

If a small cyst causes discomfort, at-home treatment options include:

  • Pain relievers: Taking over-the-counter pain relievers, including acetaminophen and ibuprofen, may help a person with a Bartholin’s cyst relieve discomfort.
  • A warm bath: Soaking the cyst for 10–15 minutes may help it burst and heal.
  • A warm compress: Applying gentle pressure to the cyst with a flannel or cotton wool ball soaked in hot water can help.

It is important, however, to seek consultation about any unusual or suspicious lumps in the vaginal area, especially if a person has entered menopause.

Acetaminophen and ibuprofen are available to purchase online.

Larger cysts or those that have become abscesses may require drainage and treatment.

If the cyst has developed into an abscess, the doctor may prescribe antibiotics.

For larger cysts, a doctor may recommend surgery after the completion of a course of antibiotics. The procedure for draining a large cyst is known as a balloon catheter insertion.

This procedure takes place under local anesthetic and involves the following steps:

  • The doctor inserts a catheter into the cyst.
  • They inflate the catheter and may use stitches to keep it in place.
  • The catheter remains in place for about 4 weeks to allow the fluid to drain.

Other treatments include:

  • Marsupialization: The surgeon cuts the cyst open and drains the fluid. They stitch the edges of the skin open to allow the secretions to come through.
  • Carbon dioxide laser: This highly focused laser can create an opening that helps drain the cyst.
  • Needle aspiration: The surgeon uses a needle to drain the cyst. Sometimes, after draining the cyst, they fill the cavity with a 70%-alcohol solution for a few minutes before drainage. This solution reduces the risk of bacteria entering the wound.
  • Gland excision: If a person has many recurring cysts that do not respond well to any therapies, the doctor may recommend removing the Bartholin’s gland completely.

A doctor can usually diagnose this type of cyst during a pelvic examination.

They may advise an individual to undergo testing for sexually transmitted infections (STIs) on discovering a Bartholin’s cyst. This process will involve urine or blood tests, as well as a swab from the genital area.

If the person has entered menopause, the doctor may recommend a biopsy of the cyst to rule out vulvar cancer.

As doctors are unsure as to the cause of the initial duct blockage, there are not many recommendations for preventing a Bartholin’s cyst.

However, because STIs, such as gonorrhea and chlamydia, can cause the cyst, people who are sexually active can reduce their risk by using barrier contraception, such as a condom or dental dam.

Using the home remedy options in this article can help people with an asymptomatic cyst prevent the formation of an abscess.

A Bartholin’s cyst is a growth on the Bartholin’s glands, which provide lubrication during sexual contact.

The cyst is often painless and barely noticeable until a doctor diagnoses it during a routine examination or while investigating another health condition.

Bacterial infectious agents often cause the initial duct blockage that leads to Bartholin’s cysts, although the exact mechanisms behind the blockage are often unclear. Some STIs, such as gonorrhea and chlamydia, can cause the cyst.

It is often safe to leave small, painless cysts alone or use home remedies to address any discomfort.

However, large cysts or those that have become abscesses may need further medical attention. Several procedures are available for the management of Bartholin’s cysts, including balloon catheter inflation.

It is important to seek consultation about any unusual lumps on the vulva or vagina to rule out cancers and other health concerns.

Removal of Vaginal Cysts | All Women’s Care

Vaginal cysts are sac-like lumps that contain fluid, air, or another substance. In most cases, vaginal cysts are painless and harmless. The cysts typically vary in size; some are too small to see while others could be up to the size of an orange. Vaginal cysts could occur due to several factors. Some of the leading causes of cysts are injuries during childbirth, a buildup of fluid in the vagina, and the occurrence of benign tumors in the vagina. If you are uncomfortable with a vaginal cyst or if the cyst keeps returning, you could undergo surgery to have it removed. If you are above the age of 40, it is advisable to have vaginal cysts removed because they could end up being cancerous. All Women’s Care provides cyst removal and gynecological services in Los Angeles.

Types of Vaginal Cysts

The human body is susceptible to the development of bumps and lumps when you least expect it. It is common for people to get lumps and cysts without even knowing the cause of the lumps. Vaginal cysts can occur in different forms. Some of the common types of vaginal cysts are:

Inclusion Cysts


Inclusion cysts are the most common types of vaginal cysts. They are small and can occur at the lower back of your vaginal wall. Due to their small size, it is hard to notice inclusion cysts. The leading causes of inclusion cysts are injuries during childbirth or surgery.

Bartholin’s Glands Cysts

The Bartholin’s glands are located on either side of the vaginal opening.  They are responsible for producing the substance that lubricates the labia (vaginal lips). It is common for obstruction to occur at the opening of these glands, leading to the accumulation of liquid in the vagina. The liquid collection could lead to a swelling known as a Bartholin’s cyst. Usually, the cyst is painless; however, if an infection occurs in the cyst, pus could collect and lead to inflammation of the vaginal tissues commonly known as an abscess.

Many women develop Bartholin’s cysts at some point in their lives. The ideal treatment for the cyst will depend on several factors, including the size of the cyst.  The perfect treatment procedure will also depend on whether the cyst is painful or infected.

Sometimes, you do not have to seek medical treatment for a Bartholin’s cysts because the cyst drains on its own. You might only require some home remedies to handle the cysts.  However, in some other instances, you might need to see a gynecologist for surgical drainage of the vaginal cyst. If a Bartholin’s cyst has an infection, the medical expert could recommend some antibiotics to treat the infected cyst. 

Gartner’s Duct Cysts  

When a baby is born, the ducts in a developing embryo should disappear; however, this is not always the case. Sometimes, the ducts could remain and form vaginal cysts at a later stage in life. 

Müllerian Cysts

Müllerian cysts could occur if some material remains behind as a baby develops. Typically, the cysts occur on the vagina; in most cases, they contain mucus. 

Risk Factors and Causes of Vaginal Cysts

There are many risk factors and causes of vaginal cysts. The cause of a vaginal cyst will depend on the type of cyst. However, the typical causes of cysts are clogging of glands or ducts. Clogging makes liquids and other substances accumulate inside the vaginal tissues and glands, leading to cysts’ formation.  

Vaginal cysts could also occur due to trauma on the vaginal walls. For instance, inclusion cysts occur due to the pressure and the trauma exerted on the vaginal wall during childbirth. You could develop an inclusion cyst if you undergo episiotomy during childbirth. An episiotomy is a surgical cut that doctors make on the vaginal opening to enlarge it and make it easy for the baby to come out. Inclusion cysts could also occur if you undergo a surgery that strains the lining of your vagina.

Blocking of the opening of the Bartholin’s gland is the cause of Bartholin’s gland cysts. The blockage leads to the accumulation of fluid in the gland leading to fluid-filled sac.  A Bartholin cyst could also result from several types of bacteria, including bacteria responsible for causing chlamydia and gonorrhea.  Sometimes, a Bartholin’s abscess could result from bacteria found in the intestinal tract, including the E.coli bacteria. 

Symptoms of Vaginal Cysts

It may be hard to know that you have vaginal cysts because, in most cases, there is no pain in the vaginal cysts. You can tell that you have a small lump along your vaginal lips or your vaginal walls.

In most cases, your gynecologist will notice the vaginal cysts while conducting a routine vaginal examination.  Women should undergo a gynecological exam at least once per year.  During these examinations, your gynecologist can notice any peculiar features on your vaginal wall.

A vaginal cyst could keep growing or remain the same over time.  Even if a vaginal cyst does not cause any pain, it could cause discomfort, especially if the cyst is huge. You could feel uncomfortable while walking with a tampon or when having sex.

An infected cyst is likely to cause some pain and discomfort. A cyst infection could result from the healthy bacteria that thrive on the skin. An infection could also occur due to a sexually transmitted infection. If a vaginal cyst forms an abscess, it could be excruciating. A cyst could also cause discomfort.

If you realize that you have a vaginal cyst, it is essential to have a gynecologist inspect the cyst to ensure that it is not cancerous. You should seek immediate medical attention if a cyst is painful or if it has a sign of infection. A common symptom of infection is the presence of pus and a foul smell.

Treating Vaginal Cysts

In most cases, the treatment of vaginal cysts is not necessary since most cysts remain small and do not pose any challenges. Your doctor might only need to examine and monitor the vaginal cysts during your routine vaginal examinations. You should seek treatment if the cyst makes you feel uncomfortable. A gynecologist can use different treatment methods to treat vaginal cysts. The typical treatment methods are:

Antibiotics Prescription

Your gynecologist could recommend antibiotics to treat a vaginal cyst if it is infected. Antibiotics will also be ideal if you have a sexually transmitted infection. However, if your gynecologist can fully drain the vaginal cyst, antibiotics might not be necessary.  

Sitz Bath

You can relieve the discomfort that comes from vaginal cysts by taking a sitz bath. A sitz bath entails sitting in a bathtub full of warm water several times a day.  You might have to repeat the procedure for 3-4 days. The frequent warm bath could make tiny vaginal cysts burst and drain the contents. When the cysts drain, you might not be required to seek medical attention.


The marsupialization procedure is ideal for cysts that are bothersome and keep recurring. It entails stitching both sides of a drainage incision. This procedure helps to create permanent drainage, which helps prevent cyst formation. After conducting the process, a gynecologist could place a rubber tube to promote adequate drainage. You might have to remain with the tube for several days after the procedure to ensure that the cysts do not recur. 

Removal of Bartholin’s Cysts

The removal of Bartholin’s cysts is also a possible treatment procedure. However, gynecologists rarely use this form of treatment.

Surgical Drainage

Surgical drainage is vital in cases where you have a sizable vaginal cyst or an infected vaginal cyst. Your gynecologist will use local anesthesia to eliminate pain. The surgical drainage involves making a small incision into the cyst and draining its contents. After draining the cyst, the doctor could place a small rubber tube in the incision to ensure that the cyst drains fully. For complete drainage of the cyst, it might be necessary to remain with the rubber tube for several weeks.


Your gynecologist could conduct surgery to remove the entire cyst if the cyst is large and makes you feel uncomfortable.  Surgery could also be a good option for treating vaginal cysts that keep recurring.  For women above the age of 40, it is advisable to remove vaginal cysts because they might end up being cancerous. A cyst is not likely to recur after surgery.

Before the gynecologist decides on the proper treatment method for treating vaginal cysts, you might have to undergo a biopsy to rule out the presence of cancer.  While conducting a biopsy, your healthcare professional will remove a small tissue from the cyst.  He/she will then examine the tissue to determine whether it is cancerous.

Preparing for Surgical Cyst Removal

If you are scheduled for surgical removal of vaginal cysts, you could be wondering about how to prepare in advance.  It is essential to understand what the surgery entails, its benefits, as well as the likely risks. Here is how you should prepare for surgical removal of vaginal cysts:

  • Before the surgery, it is crucial to inform your doctor about any medicines you could be taking. For instance, you should ensure that you reveal any form of supplements, vitamins, health products, and herbal remedies. Some medications and supplements could interfere with the way you interact with anesthesia. Some medications could also lead to excessive bleeding during surgery. Therefore, to avoid unexpected risks during surgery, you should reveal all the crucial details to the doctor.
  • It is advisable to temporarily stop taking the drugs before the surgery if you are on medications like aspirin or other blood thinners. Ensure that you seek the counsel of the doctor and follow all the necessary instructions. Consuming blood thinners before a vaginal cyst removal surgery could cause excessive bleeding. You might have to stop taking certain medications one week before the surgery.
  • Depending on the state of your health, you might have to visit your primary doctor or specialist a few days before the surgery. Your doctor will examine and determine whether you are fit to undergo vaginal surgery to remove vaginal cysts.
  • It is also advisable to stop smoking some weeks before undergoing vaginal surgery. Smokers could have a hard time breathing during surgery. Smokers might also take longer to recover from vaginal surgery. It is advisable to stop smoking 6-8 weeks before undergoing surgery. In case you are unable to smoke before undergoing surgery, you could rely on a nicotine patch while at the hospital.
  • Some people may require bowel prep before undergoing vaginal surgery. Your gynecologist will decide whether you need bowel prep during your preoperative The role of bowel prep is to clean your bowel, and the procedure is often completed on the night before the surgery.

On the Day of Surgery

Surgery can be a stressful experience. However, you can enjoy some calm by preparing in advance and knowing what to expect.  On the day of surgery, you might have to avoid eating; however, this will depend on your gynecologist’s instructions. If the doctor advises you to avoid eating or drinking on the actual day of surgery, ensure that you adhere to the instructions. Failing to follow instructions could lead to postponement of the surgery. If you have to take some medication on the day of surgery, you could take them with a sip of water. 

Ensure that you take a thorough shower before you go in for surgery. However, it is essential to ensure that you do not apply lotions, deodorants, or perfumes, especially at the surgical site. Although you might feel tempted, you should avoid shaving the surgical site on your own and let your gynecologist handle everything.

You should take out all jewelry; you might even have to take out your contact lenses if you have them. Before conducting the surgery, your gynecologist will mark the surgery area carefully to avoid making any errors. You do not have to fear because your doctor will ensure that you are comfortable during the surgery. Your anesthesia provider could make you sleep or only numb the surgical site.

The doctor could place compression stockings on your legs during the vaginal surgery. The role of the stockings is to prevent the formation of blood clots in your legs during surgery. The stockings could remain on your legs until you can start walking. If you are prone to blood clotting, the doctor could give you a thinning blood medication to prevent blood clots during surgery.

Before the start of the surgery, the doctor might insert a tube into your bladder. The role of the tube is to monitor the amount of urine coming out during the operation. However, soon after the operation, the tube will be removed.

The Risks of Vaginal Cysts Removal Surgery

You do not have to worry about the risks of vaginal cysts removal because doctors work hard to ensure that all goes well. However, even with proper planning, problems can still occur. Some of the risks that you could face while undergoing vaginal surgery are: 

Excessive Bleeding

You could face the risk of excessive bleeding while undergoing vaginal surgery. If this problem occurs, you could receive a blood transfusion to raise the amount of blood in your body. Some patients could have some reservations regarding blood transfusion, usually for religious or personal reasons. If you are not comfortable with a blood transfusion, you should inform your doctor before the surgery.

Bladder or Ureter Damage

During a vaginal cyst removal surgery, the organs situated close to the vagina could be at risk of damage. These organs include the bladder, the ureters, the bowel, and the uterus. However, damage to these organs during vaginal surgery is rare and occurs in less than 1% of the cases.  If there is damage to any of these organs while you are in surgery, the doctors will correct the damage while you are still in surgery.


In all types of surgery, there is a risk of death. However, some surgeries have a higher risk of death than others. The risk of dying in vaginal surgery is minimal. 

After the Surgery

The length of the surgery could vary from one person to the other. You should be able to go home 1 to 6 hours after the surgery. You will probably need several weeks to recover. After undergoing surgery, you might have to abstain from having sex for a minimum of two weeks or until your vulva heals fully. 

After surgery to remove vaginal cysts, the pain and the discomfort resulting from the cysts should go. However, some women require undergoing several surgeries before they fully get rid of vaginal cysts. 

After undergoing surgery, follow up is crucial to ensure that you are the right recovery track. If you have followed up appointments with your gynecologist, you should ensure that you honor the appointments. You should never miss a follow-up appointment just because you feel healed.  If you experience any problems during the recovery period, ensure that you get in touch with your gynecologist.

When leaving the gynecologist’s clinic to your home, you should ensure that you have someone to drive you. Due to the anesthesia and the pain medication, you are likely to feel drowsy. Therefore, it would not be safe for you to drive. 

Your medical expert could give you some additional instructions to follow as you recover from a vaginal removal surgery.  For instance, you might have to adhere to a certain diet. You might also have to avoid certain activities before you get back to your normal routine. 

Possible Risks After Surgery

After undergoing vaginal surgery to remove vaginal cysts, most patients go home on the same day. However, patients could still be at risk days or weeks after surgery. It is important for a patient to be alert and to look out warning signs after surgery.

A blood clot in the legs or another place like the lungs is a possible risk after undergoing vaginal surgery. Some indicators of this complication include shortness of breath, chest pains, and leg pain and swelling. If you notice these symptoms days or even weeks after undergoing surgery, you should contact your doctor immediately.

Infection is also a possible risk after undergoing vaginal surgery to remove cysts. You could tell that you have an infection if you experience stinging and pain while passing urine. If you experience a persistent urge to pass urine, it could be a sign of a urinary tract infection. Other signs of infection include pain, swelling, redness, and fever. If you experience any of the mentioned signs, you should contact your doctor immediately. 

You could also have scar tissue at the surgical site. Usually, scar tissue is thicker than the surrounding skin. In the first few days or weeks after undergoing vaginal surgery, you could experience pain and discomfort at the scar tissue. 

You might also be at risk of recurrence of vaginal cysts even after undergoing a vaginal surgery. Some women are only able to get rid of vaginal cysts and to prevent them from occurring after undergoing several surgeries. 

While at home after surgery, you should call your doctor if you develop a high fever that exceeds 100.4°F (38°C). You should also seek immediate medical attention if you start experiencing heavy bleeding. You can tell that you have heavy bleeding if you soak a pad in one hour or less. If you experience heavy vaginal discharge with a foul odor, you should seek immediate treatment.

Other warning signs could include developing a rash, nausea and breathing, and severe pain in the pelvic area, which does not end despite taking medication. 

Find an Experienced Gynecologist Near Me

If you are suffering from vaginal cysts that make you feel uncomfortable, you could consider the removal of vaginal cysts.  Your gynecologist could recommend other methods of getting rid of the cysts. However, if the cysts are large, persistent, and keep recurring, surgery could be the best option. For the best vaginal surgery services in Los Angeles, contact All Women’s Care at 213-250-9461 and speak to a medical expert.

Bartholin’s Cyst – an overview

Bartholin’s Gland Cyst or Abscess

Bartholin’s duct cysts are seen in approximately 2% of new gynecologic patients.8 They arise in the duct system, and the occlusion is usually near the opening of the main duct into the vestibule. Chronic inflammation can obstruct the orifice and lead to cystic dilation of the duct, but not the gland, proximal to the obstruction.

Bartholin’s cysts average 1 to 3 cm in size and are usually asymptomatic. Larger cysts are associated with vulvar pain, dyspareunia, or difficulty sitting or ambulating. Discomfort may be associated with rapid enlargement, as might be induced by repeated or prolonged sexual stimulation.

The diagnosis is clinical and is based on the findings of a soft, painless mass in the medial labia majora or lower vestibular area. Most cysts are unilateral and are detected during a routine pelvic examination of by the woman herself.

No treatment is necessary for asymptomatic Bartholin’s cysts, except in postmenopausal women, in whom a biopsy or excision should be considered to rule out carcinoma. These cysts are usually sterile and therefore do not require antibiotic therapy.69 A cyst that is symptomatic or disfiguring requires treatment, of which there are several modes. The simplest procedure is an incision and drainage, with or without packing. However, if this procedure is done alone, there is a high likelihood of recurrence when the incised tissue edges reapproximate. Supplementation of the incision and drainage can be performed with a Word catheter. It is a balloon-tipped device that can be placed in the cavity after drainage. The bulb is inflated to keep the catheter in place for 2 to 4 weeks while the duct tract epithelializes. The end of the catheter is tucked in the vagina to minimize discomfort. An alternative procedure after failure of the Word catheter is marsupialization of the gland, whereby a new orifice is created. A fourth method involves sclerotherapy, in which silver nitrate sticks are inserted into the cyst cavity to necrotize the cyst wall after incision and drainage. Mild burning may occur. The patient returns after 48 hours for cleaning of the vulva. A randomized controlled trial found that silver nitrate insertion was as effective as excision of Bartholin’s cysts or abscesses.70 Excision of the entire Bartholin’s gland is the definitive procedure for both cysts and abscesses. It is usually considered after other methods have repetitively failed, because it is not an office procedure and has higher morbidity, including excessive bleeding, hematoma formation, cellulitis, and dyspareunia.

Bartholin’s gland ducts and cysts can become infected and form abscesses. They are usually the result of polymicrobial infections, with the most common organisms being Escherichia coli, Neisseria gonorrhoeae, and Bacteroides species.71 Therefore, patients should have both routine cultures and those for gonorrhea and chlamydia.

Symptoms for Bartholin’s abscess include pain and tenderness over the affected gland. Usually, these abscesses develop rapidly, within 2 to 3 days, and are associated with acute pain and tenderness. They tend to rupture spontaneously within 72 hours. Patients usually present with pain on intercourse or pain on walking and sitting. Examination reveals a lesion that appears as a large, tender, soft or fluctuant mass in the medial labia majora or lower vestibular area, occasionally with erythema, edema, and pointing of the abscess.

Treatment entails drainage of the abscess, which provides immediate pain relief. Incision and drainage can be performed, followed by Word catheter placement, marsupialization, or silver nitrate insertion. Antibiotic regimens include one dose of ceftriaxone (125 mg IM) or cefixime (400 mg PO) to cover E. coli and N. gonorrhoeae plus clindamycin (300 mg PO four times a day for 7 days) to cover anaerobes. If Chlamydia trachomatis is present, azithromycin (1 g PO in a single dose) should be administered. Treatment with broad-spectrum antibiotics may easily delay ripening of the abscess. For women older than 40 years of age, some recommend complete excision of the gland to exclude underlying carcinoma.72

Recurrent Huge Left Bartholin’s Gland Abscess for One Year in a Teenager

Bartholin’s gland abscess is the commonest worldwide reported abscess in gynaecological outpatient clinics; it has also been reported that Bartholin’s gland abscess is three times more common in occurrences compared to Bartholin’s gland cyst. It is more common in women who are at risk of acquiring sexually transmitted infections; however, other causes of infection should be investigated to exclude other causes of disease. We present the case of an 18-year-old female patient, a teenager of the reproductive age group, with the recurrent development of huge Bartholin’s gland abscess in a period of one year. The marsupialization surgical technique of repair was performed successfully. She was discharged home and she was scheduled to visit STI’s clinic where she was receiving regular screening for STI’s and she was also given health education regarding preventive measures for STI’s.

1. Introduction

Recurrent Bartholin’s gland abscess among women of reproductive age is commonly associated with the risk of being in contact with the sexually transmitted polymicrobial infection.

The pathogenesis of Bartholin’s gland abscess starts slowly as the progressive swelling of the labia majora which later becomes painful, and finally it is accompanied by fever and massive swelling of the genital vulva on the affected side [1].

The risk of acquiring STIs is related to getting another associated genital tract infection. It is estimated that, among individuals who contract STIs, some of them would likely develop Bartholin’s gland abscess, and there is a high chance of acquiring other sexually transmitted infections [2].

It has been reported that Gram-negative bacteria was more commonly isolated than Gram-positive species that are found in the cultivated Bartholin’s gland abscess pus; however, the controversy has been observed among directly isolated suspicious species because the abscess is caused by multiple microorganisms [3].

In the pathogenesis of Bartholin’s gland abscess, directly induced inflammatory response caused by multiple microorganisms has been associated with the increased risk of acquiring other STIs including HIV and syphilis among the affected individuals [4].

There is high risk of acquiring sexually transmitted infection among individuals with multiple sexual patners and those who practice unprotected sexual intercourse which could be due to decreased body’s resistance of clearing the infection and infected individuals would develop persistent infection, which is the risk factor for recurrent sexually transmitted infections [5].

Bartholin’s gland is usually associated with secretion of normal presexual intercourse vaginal fluids, and rarely the gland is associated with infection, but it has the possibility of developing Bartholin’s gland cyst that can progress to an increased large-sized gland [6]. However, the modalities of treatment by surgical intervention for both conditions remain the same.

We report the case of an 18-year-old female teenager of the reproductive age group with a one-year recurrent huge Bartholin’s gland abscess whereby the marsupialization surgical technique of repair was successfully done.

2. Case Presentation

An 18-year-old female presented to the gynaecology clinic at Bugando Medical Centre, Mwanza, Tanzania, with a history of recurrent painful huge genital swelling in her left labia majora for one year which initially started as a small swelling, then increased in size, and became painful. She gave a history of pus discharge, and due to its recurrent and persistence swelling, it was associated with fever and inability to walk properly and was accompanied with painful micturition. She had a history of being treated unsuccessfully several times through suction with a needle syringe though she noted a temporary relief. However, she had a history of long-term use of antibiotics without getting relief. The swelling recurred at intervals of less than one or two months over the last year. She has no history of receiving counselling for HIV and testing.

On examination, there was tender large mass involving the left labia majora and minora, shiny and with a smooth surface, discharging pus at the small sinus, erythematous, fluctuant, and measuring approximately 10 cm in length and 6 cm in width. Her vaginal examination revealed normal vaginal wall, no any offensive discharge, with the healthy cervix; she had negative cervix excitation test and normal sized uterus; neither adnexal mass nor tenderness was elicited (Figure 1). She had a working diagnosis of huge left Bartholin’s gland abscess. On general examination, she had no peripheral lymph node enlargement. Her vital signs were a blood pressure of 120/70 mmHg, pulse rate of 88 beats per minute, and temperature of 37 Celsius. Other systemic examination was normal. Cardiovascular system examination revealed audible first and second heart sounds and no murmurs. Respiratory system examination showed a respiratory rate of 21 breaths/minute, normal chest contour, trachea centrally located, normal chest expansion, and normal breath sound on auscultation. Per abdominal examination, abdomen was flat, moving normally with respiration, and there were no visible superficial veins. The abdomen was soft and nontender. The liver, spleen, and kidneys were not palpable. No shifting dullness and bowel sounds were normal on auscultation.

The patient was counselled for emergency marsupialization, and informed consent was obtained. Preoperative antibiotics were given: ciprofloxacin 500 mg orally 12 hourly for 5 days, metronidazole 400 mg orally 8 hourly for 7 days, and doxycycilline 100 mg orally bid for 7 days. In theatre, surgical intervention by marsupialization was done under spinal anaesthesia (5% lidocaine 50 mg preparation). The patient was placed in the lithotomy position, and left huge Bartholin’s gland abscess was exposed. The incision was made through the gaped skin covering the abscess whereby pus was drained and cleaned with normal saline until the underlying fresh tissue edge of a gland was identified and was oozing fresh blood. A lot of foul-smelling pus was drained from the abscess, approximately 30 ml. The edges of the gland were grasped gently using a forceps. The sutures material used was a vicryl number 2-0, and repair by the marsupialization method was done. In the postoperative care, she continued with already prescribed antibiotics, and the analgesia given was paracetamol 1 g orally 8 hourly for 3 days. The patient was discharged on the 3rd day and linked to reproductive health clinics for counselling about the knowledge of sexually transmitted infection prevention and treatments.

3. Discussion

In our case, the patient presented with a history of recurrent left huge labial swelling for the past one year. The reason of recurrence probably was suggested to be the previous treatment by incision and drainage rather than treatment by marsupialization-type incision and followed by unknown prolonged course of oral antibiotics [7].

The microorganisms causing recurrent Bartholin’s gland abscess are polymicrobial and often commensal microorganisms that are not sexually transmitted. In our case, the likely hood that, there was high chance the Batholin’s gland abscess was caused by a sexually transmitted infection was the fact most teenagers are sexually active [8].

Treatment of Bartholin’s gland abscesses depends on the presenting symptoms that may indicate the cause of that abscess; however, if it happens that it started to present asymptomatically, it may require marsupialization only without issuing the polymicrobial antibiotic treatment [9].

Bartholin’s gland cysts and abscesses may present with different symptoms, and the required surgical management should be marsupialization and not incision and drainage. Though the incision and drainage procedure was shown to be relatively quick and easy to perform and was proven to be quick on cure rate, among patients receiving this type of surgical technique, it has been shown to have increased tendency of recurrences in a patient with Bartholin’s gland abscess [10].

The use of systemic broad-spectrum antibiotics in this patient aimed to cover polymicrobial species of bacteria. However, it has been reported that some of the bacteria isolated from Bartholin’s gland abscess are normal vaginal flora in origin, and therefore prescribing antibiotics increases the risk of infections in susceptible immuno-incompetent individuals [11].

In our case, there was a history of recurrent Bartholin’s gland abscess, and this might be due to the repeated exposures to the infections or improper use of strong broad-spectrum antibiotics together with incision and drainage instead of management by marsupialization, as we know that incision and drainage have been shown to increase risk of Bartholin’s gland abscess recurrences [12].

Having a huge Bartholin’s gland abscess as the case in this patient and prescribing multiple antimicrobial agents with incision and drainage alone may generally not solve the issue of recurrent Bartholin’s gland abscess. The marsupialization surgical technique done in this patient has been shown to be a successful surgical repair, on the progressive follow-up of the patient through the gynaecological clinic. However, additional use of broad-spectrum antibiotics has also shown to support the improvement of the recurrent Bartholin’s gland infection [13].

4. Conclusion

Bartholin’s gland abscess should be distinguished from other vulvar masses. A simple management by marsupialization and broad-spectrum antibiotics has been proved to be effective rather than management by surgical incision and drainage alone.


A written informed consent was obtained from the patient for publication of this case report.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.

Authors’ Contributions

Athanase Lilungulu performed the surgery and wrote and drafted the first manuscript. Dismas Matovelo performed the surgery and reviewed the manuscript. Albert Kihunrwa reviewed the patient prior to surgery and revised several drafts of the manuscript. Balthazar Gumodoka revised several drafts of the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final manuscript. Bonaventura C. T. Mpondo and Abdallah Mlwati involved in the treatment of medical conditions and revised drafts of the manuscript.


The authors acknowledge the help of the gynaecological ward nurse team and medical team together with theatre operating room staffs who tirelessly assisted in the care of this patient and counselling.

Bartholin’s Cyst – Abscess – Clinical Features – Management

A Bartholin’s cyst is a fluid-filled sac within one of the Bartholin’s glands of the vagina.

The exact incidence of Bartholin’s cysts and abscesses is uncertain, but abscesses account for 2% of all gynaecological visits a year. Asymptomatic cysts may occur in up to 3% of women, although they often do not present to healthcare services.

In this article, we shall look at the risk factors, clinical features and management of a Bartholin’s cyst or abscess.

Aetiology and Pathophysiology

The Bartholin’s glands (greater vestibular glands) are located deep to the posterior aspect of the labia majora. Their openings are located either side of the vaginal orifice, within the vestibule of the vagina (approximately 4 o’clock and 8 o’clock positions), just below the hymenal ring. They secrete mucus to lubricate the vagina.

A build-up of mucus secretions can cause the duct of the gland to become blocked, from which a cyst can develop. The cyst itself can become infected, and if untreated, develop into an abscess.

The infective organisms are usually aerobic, with Escherichia coli, MRSA and STI’s the most common.

Fig 1 – The anatomical position of the Bartholin’s glands.

Risk Factors

Bartholin’s cysts characteristically occur in nulliparous women of child-bearing age. Other risk factors include:

  • Personal history of Bartholin’s cyst
  • Sexually active (STIs can cause a Bartholin’s cyst or abscess)
  • History of vulval surgery

Clinical Features

Small Bartholin’s cysts are often asymptomatic. If they become large, they can cause vulvar pain (particularly when walking and sitting), and superficial dyspareunia (pain during sexual intercourse).

The cyst can undergo spontaneous rupture – after which the patient typically experiences a sudden relief of pain.

Bartholin’s abscesses typically present with acute onset of pain, and/or difficulty passing urine.

On examination, a unilateral labial mass will be observed. This typically arises from the posterior aspect of the labia majora, although a large cyst or abscess can expand anteriorly.

  • Bartholin’s cyst – typically soft, fluctuant and non-tender
  • Bartholin’s abscess – typically tense and hard, with surrounding cellulitis
Fig 2 – A large, right-sided Bartholin’s cyst.

Differential Diagnosis

The differential diagnosis for a mass in the labial or vulval region includes:

  • Bartholin’s gland carcinoma – primary carcinoma is rare (approximately 0.1-5% of vulvar malignancies).
  • Bartholin’s benign tumour – such as adenomas and nodular hyperplasia. These are rarer than Bartholin’s carcinoma.
  • Other types of cyst – e.g. sebaceous cyst, Skene’s duct cyst, mucous cyst
  • Other solid masses – e.g. fibroma, lipoma, leiomyoma


The diagnosis of a Bartholin’s cyst or abscess is often a clinical one, and further investigations are not routinely required.

However – if the woman is over 40 years of age, a biopsy of the cyst should be considered (especially if there are solid components to the swelling) – this is to exclude vulval carcinoma.

If there are any indications of a sexually transmitted infection, endocervical and high vaginal swabs should be taken.


If the cyst is small and asymptomatic, no treatment is required. Warm baths can be recommended to the patient, as they may stimulate spontaneous rupture.

Treatment is usually by Word Catheter or marsupialisation. There is no high quality evidence comparing different treatment options. However, simple incision and drainage without marsupialisation or placement of a Word catheter means that the accumulation of fluid is likely to reoccur (due to further outflow obstruction).

  • Word Catheter – an incision is made into the cyst or abscess, and a catheter is inserted. The tip is inflated with 2-3ml of saline. It is left in place for 4-6 weeks to allow epithelisation of the surgically created tract. This technique is not suitable for deep cysts or abscesses. It can be performed under local anaesthesia in a clinic.
    • Complications include infection, recurrence, dyspareunia and scarring.
  • Marsupialisation – a vertical incision is made into the cyst, behind the hymenal ring, allowing for spontaneous drainage of the cavity. The cyst wall is then everted and approximated to the end of the vaginal mucosa by sutures. This requires a general anaesthetic to achieve good marsupialisation
    • Complications include bleeding/haematoma, dyspareunia and infection.

Less commonly used techniques include silver nitrate cautery, carbon dioxide laser and needle aspiration. Complete excision of the gland is rarely performed – and usually only in cases of suspected malignancy.

There is no evidence to routinely pack the cavity after any of these procedures.

Note: Antibiotics are generally not used in the management of a Bartholin’s cyst or abscess. However, they can be considered if the patient is systemically unwell, or immunocompromised.

Fig 3 – Marsupialisation of a Bartholin’s gland cyst.
90,000 Bartholin gland cyst – prices for removal of the Bartholin gland cyst in the “CM-Clinic”

Kapanadze Magda Yurievna

Obstetrician-gynecologist, Ph.D., doctor of the highest category

“CM-Clinic” on the street. Yartsevskaya (metro Molodezhnaya)

Children’s department on the street.Yartsevskaya (metro Molodezhnaya)

Askolskaya Svetlana Ivanovna

Obstetrician-gynecologist of the highest category, MD

“CM-Clinic” on the street. Novocheremushkinskaya (metro station “Novye Cheryomushki”)

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Obstetrician-gynecologist, Ph.D.

“CM-Clinic” on the street.Novocheremushkinskaya (metro station “Novye Cheryomushki”)

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Children’s department on the street. Novocheremushkinskaya (metro station “Novye Cheryomushki”)

Children’s department on Simferopol boulevard (metro Sevastopolskaya)

Bykova Svetlana Anatolyevna

Obstetrician-gynecologist of the highest category, Ph.M.Sc.

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Obstetrician-gynecologist of the first category, Ph.M.Sc.

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Remez Elena Anatolyevna

Gynecologist-endocrinologist, Ph.D.

“CM-Clinic” on the street.Novocheremushkinskaya (metro station “Novye Cheryomushki”)

Children’s department on the street. Novocheremushkinskaya (metro station “Novye Cheryomushki”)

Baeva Irina Borisovna

Obstetrician-gynecologist, Ph.D.

“CM-Clinic” on the street.Senezhskaya (station MCC “Koptevo”)

Kamalova Elena Yurievna

Obstetrician-gynecologist, Ph.D.

“CM-Clinic” on the street. Senezhskaya (station MCC “Koptevo”)

Kuznetsova Tatiana Valerievna

Obstetrician-gynecologist, Ph.M.Sc.

“CM-Clinic” on the street. Senezhskaya (station MCC “Koptevo”)

Tikhomirov Alexander Leonidovich

Obstetrician-gynecologist, Doctor of Medical Sciences, Professor, Associate Professor

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“CM-Clinic” on the street. Yaroslavl (metro station VDNKh)

Khusainova Venera Haydarovna

Obstetrician-gynecologist, Ph.D.

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“CM-Clinic” in Staropetrovsky proezd (metro station “Voykovskaya”)

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“CM-Clinic” on the street. Marshal Timoshenko (metro station Krylatskoe)

Voronoi Svyatoslav Vladimirovich

Gynecologist of the highest category, Ph.MD .. Deputy Chief Physician for Surgery at the Center for Reproductive Health “CM-Clinic”

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Center for Reproductive Health “CM-Clinic” (metro “Belorusskaya”)

Gossen Valeria Alexandrovna

Obstetrician-gynecologist, fertility specialist, ultrasound diagnostician, Ph.M.Sc.

“CM-Clinic” in the lane. Raskova (m. “Belorusskaya”)

Center for Reproductive Health “CM-Clinic” (metro “Belorusskaya”)

Kalinina Natalya Anatolievna

Reproductologist of the highest category, obstetrician-gynecologist, Ph.MD, head of the ART department

“CM-Clinic” in the lane. Raskova (m. “Belorusskaya”)

Center for Reproductive Health “CM-Clinic” (metro “Belorusskaya”)

Stavnichuk Anna Vladimirovna

Fertility specialist, gynecologist, Ph.MD, associate professor

“CM-Clinic” in the lane. Raskova (m. “Belorusskaya”)

Center for Reproductive Health “CM-Clinic” (metro “Belorusskaya”)

Uskova Maria Alexandrovna

Obstetrician-gynecologist, fertility specialist Ph.M.Sc.

“CM-Clinic” in the lane. Raskova (m. “Belorusskaya”)

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Markova Evgeniya Vladimirovna

Obstetrician-gynecologist of the highest category, Ph.D.

“CM-Clinic” on Simferopol Boulevard (m.”Sevastopolskaya”)

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Scar Elena Ivanovna

Obstetrician-gynecologist, ultrasound diagnostician, Ph.D.

“CM-Clinic” on Simferopol Boulevard (m.”Sevastopolskaya”)

Children’s department on Simferopol boulevard (metro Sevastopolskaya)

Bartholin gland cyst removal – Paracelsus Medical Center

Cyst of the Bartholin gland.

Bartholin glands are located at the entrance to the vagina in women, one on each side.They are small, and normally not noticeable, they are not felt in any way. The function of the Bartholin glands is to release fluid to the mucous membranes, the inner surfaces of the labia minora.

Bartholin gland cyst develops when the exit channel in the gland is blocked. This usually only happens to one of the two glands. The liquid that is produced in the gland begins to accumulate inside. As a result, the gland enlarges and forms cysts. If the cyst becomes infected, an abscess occurs.

Bartholin gland cyst symptoms.

A cyst of the Bartholin gland causes swelling of the labia on one side, near the entrance to the vagina.

By itself, the cyst usually does not cause severe pain. And if such pain appears, this may indicate the development of an abscess.

Diagnostics of the Bartholin gland cyst. In our Paracelsus MC in one day you can undergo all the necessary examinations to make this diagnosis and prepare for surgical treatment!

In order to diagnose a Bartholin gland cyst, a medical examination is required.To prepare for surgical treatment, a number of examinations will be required. Surgery examination and validity of examination results: colposcopy-12 months

Ultrasound of the pelvic organs – 3 months

Ultrasound of the veins of the lower extremities – 3 months

Swab for flora, bacteriological culture from the cervical canal -10 days

Oncocytology from the cervix – 6 months

General analysis of urine-10 days, General analysis of blood and reticulocytes -10 days,

Electrocardiogram with decoding -14days,

Blood for HIV, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, Syphilis – 3 months.

Biochemical blood test: general, direct, indirect Bilir., Total protein, albumin,

urea, glucose, creatinine, uric acid, AST, ALT, blood sodium and potassium, cholesterol -10 days

Coagulogram – 10 days

Blood group and Rh factor

Fluorography – 6 months.

Mammography -24 months (after 36 years), 12 months (after 50 years) Ultrasound of the mammary glands -12 months (up to 36 years)

Consultation of a therapist, anesthesiologist, other specialists according to indications.Other examinations can be added according to indications.

Surgical treatment of the Bartholin gland cyst. In Our MC Paracel, surgical treatment of the Bartholin gland cyst is carried out in a planned manner after a complete examination of the patient, if necessary, a certificate of incapacity for work is issued. Stay in the hospital for 1 day.

The operation is performed on a gynecological operating table, during the intervention, not only the cyst wall is removed, but also the gland itself, in order to exclude relapses (repetitions) of the disease.The cyst is accessed through a small incision on the inner surface of the labia. Due to the good reparative qualities of the vaginal mucosa and vulva, the surgical wound heals completely without leaving a trace. The removed tissue must be sent for histological examination to exclude the malignancy of the process. Method of anesthesia. These operations are performed under spinal anesthesia or machine-mask anesthesia . During the operation, the patient is completely relaxed and does not feel any pain.

Treatment of bartholinitis – inflammation of the Bartholin gland

Acute pain, swelling and redness in the labia majora are signs of bartholinitis, inflammation of the large (Bartholin’s) gland of the vestibule vestibule. If you develop these symptoms, do not delay seeking medical attention. At the French Clinic medical center, they will help to stop inflammation, prevent suppuration and other complications of the disease.

Make an appointment with a gynecologist

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Because of what Bartholin’s iron becomes inflamed

Poor hygiene, mechanical irritation of the intimate area by tight clothes and linen, frequent genital infections lead to bartholinitis. When inflammation occurs for the first time, it is an acute form of the disease. The inflammatory process can affect not only the gland, but also the surrounding soft tissues.

In case of incorrect and untimely treatment of the acute form, as well as in the presence of risk factors, the process goes into a chronic stage.

Why doctor’s help is urgently needed

With inflammation, the tissue of the gland becomes denser and more sensitive. Inflammation can lead to the formation of a purulent focus (abscess), which requires surgical treatment. With a purulent form, acute pain, swelling and redness are accompanied by a high body temperature. To avoid these complications, it helps to see a doctor. The earlier the treatment is started, the easier and faster it will pass. At an early stage, inflammation can be dealt with with conservative methods without surgery.

What kind of examination you need to undergo

With symptoms of bartholinitis, the gynecologist will take a smear from the vagina for microscopic examination, culture on the microflora with determination of sensitivity to antibiotics and PCR diagnostics of sexually transmitted infections.

The examination also includes a clinical blood test. In our medical center, all laboratory tests are performed quickly, as soon as possible.

Medicines or surgery: what determines the choice of a doctor

In acute bartholinitis, at the stage when the inflammation is localized locally, there is no suppuration, and you have a normal body temperature, conservative therapy is effective.The gynecologist will prescribe antibacterial and anti-inflammatory drugs.

Surgical treatment is required if:

  • the labia majora has swollen sharply and you feel severe throbbing pain in this area;
  • the inflamed gland is suppressed;
  • against the background of the course of the disease, you feel weakness and chills, and your body temperature has risen to 38-40 degrees;
  • Bartholin’s gland abscess opened on its own.

Call our center and we will make an appointment with a gynecologist for the nearest free time.

Rules of preparation for the operation

Since the operation takes place under intravenous anesthesia, it is done strictly on an empty stomach. At least 6 hours should elapse between the last meal and surgery.

Before the procedure, it is necessary to observe the hygiene of the external genital organs. The intimate area is pre-shaved.

How the operation proceeds

Surgical treatment of bartholinitis is carried out under intravenous anesthesia, in a completely sterile, aseptic conditions of a small operating room.The surgeon cuts the area of ​​the inflammatory focus, removes the inflamed tissue as much as possible and treats the area of ​​intervention with an antiseptic. The doctor then inserts a rubber drain and applies a bandage.

It is important to know: if the cyst has broken through on its own, you need to urgently consult a gynecologist, since this situation is dangerous with even greater infection, as well as bleeding.

How to avoid reappearance

To prevent the Bartholin gland from getting inflamed again, we recommend:

  • visit your gynecologist regularly;
  • observe the rules of hygiene;
  • avoid wearing tight underwear and uncomfortable clothes that press on the genitals;
  • Use barrier contraception (condoms).

Regular observation by a gynecologist will help you avoid health problems. If they occur, the French Clinic Medical Center will provide you with a complete, modern and comfortable treatment.

Popular questions

1. Is it necessary to drink antibiotics if a small cyst appears in the Bartholin gland?

Antibiotic therapy is prescribed for inflammation. If a cyst appears, then this indicates the presence of an infection, due to which the ducts of the gland become inflamed and clogged.It can fester at any time, so it must be removed and antibiotics taken.

2. Does the operation hurt? Can you do it under general anesthesia?

Doesn’t hurt because the procedure is always performed under anesthesia only.

3. Will there be a scar after the operation?

It depends on the degree of neglect of the situation, the prevalence of the inflammatory process, the presence or absence of suppuration, as well as on the individual characteristics of the tissues (whether there is a tendency to form dense scars).

Removal of the Bartholin gland cyst in Moscow


Petrova Evgeniya Yurievna

Leading physician


What is a Bartholin gland cyst

Bartholin’s gland is a paired organ, i.e.That is, every woman has two such glands. They are located on the eve of the vagina, in the thickness of the labia majora. The gland produces a secretion, a protein-rich, viscous, grayish liquid that serves to moisturize the vagina. At the time of sexual arousal, the amount of secretion produced increases, which contributes to a favorable course of sexual intercourse.

The secret enters the vagina through ducts that open on the inside of the labia minora. An inflammatory process in the vagina can lead to a blockage of the duct.In this case, the fluid produced by the gland begins to accumulate in the subcutaneous fat, and a cyst occurs.

Bartholin gland cyst looks like a rounded swelling of the labia. If the size is small, the cyst may be invisible. A large cyst (1 cm or more) causes discomfort and pain during movement and during intercourse.

Removal of Bartholin gland cyst

A cyst that does not cause anxiety is not operated on.Surgical treatment is used when discomfort is felt. Opening a cyst, in which the contents of the cyst are simply removed, as a rule, is not a solution to the problem, since after a while the cyst will form again. Recurrent cysts must be removed. In the process of removing the cyst, the gland itself is also removed. With a unilateral cyst, such a solution does not lead to negative consequences, since the vaginal moisture is provided by the remaining gland.

The operation is recommended after menstruation.In the presence of an inflammatory process, the operation is not performed. In case of detection of inflammation, the operation should be preceded by drug treatment.

Where can I remove a cyst of the Bartholin gland in Moscow

It is possible to remove a cyst of the Bartholin gland in Moscow at JSC “Family Doctor”. The operation is performed in the company’s surgical hospitals.

The cyst removal operation is performed under intravenous (full) anesthesia. The planned operation time (taking into account anesthesia) is 2 hours.After the operation, you need to be under medical supervision within 24 hours.

Full recovery after removal of the Bartholin gland cyst usually occurs 3-4 weeks after surgery. Sexual activity should be avoided during the recovery period.

Do not self-medicate. Contact our specialists who will correctly diagnose and prescribe treatment.

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90,000 causes, symptoms, diagnosis and treatment in Moscow

Inflammatory processes in the vagina and external genitalia are often found among women who are sexually active.One of these diseases is bartholinitis. An uncomplicated form of inflammation does not lead to a significant deterioration in well-being and a decrease in the quality of life. Women may experience problems associated with the formation of vaginal fistulas, the formation of a retention cyst of the Bartholin gland and the appearance of other complications.

What is bartholinite

Bartholinitis is based on inflammation of the Bartholin gland, which is located in the vestibule of the vagina. Most often, the pathological process is one-sided.The Bartholin gland secretes a clear liquid that provides optimal moisture to the mucous membrane and comfort and comfort for intimate contacts.

The peak incidence occurs at the age of 20-30 years. With highly contagious infections, the anterior genital tract, a significant decrease in the activity of the immune system, bilateral forms of bartholinitis are observed.

Causes of bartholinitis

Bartholinitis is based on the defeat of the Bartholin gland by specific or observed infectious microorganisms.The disease can cause gonococci, chlamydia, E. coli, staphylococci and other pathogenic pathogens. Infection occurs through unprotected intimate contact. It is also possible to develop diseases when using other people’s personal items and unsterilized medical instruments.

Predisposing factors for the development of bartholinitis:

  • a woman or her sexual partner has urogenital infections;
  • acute or chronic course of bacterial vaginosis, cystitis, pyelonephritis, colitis and other diseases in which endogenous infection is possible;
  • damage to the external genital organs;
  • weakening of the immune defense;
  • chronic course of endocrine pathologies;
  • Frequent change of sexual partners.

The Bartholin glands moisturize predisposed vaginas, which have ducts that open on the inner sides of the labia minora. Under various different infectious agents, inflammation of the ducts and mucous tissue remains. In the presence of the necessary treatment for bartholinitis at an early stage, purulent complications may appear. The excretory duct of the Bartholin gland becomes impassable, resulting in an abscess or empyema.

Bartholinitis symptoms

The inflammatory process of the Bartholin gland begins with a small labia and the formation of a dense nodule.A woman may feel a slight burning sensation that intensifies while walking and urinating. The mucous membrane begins to swell, serous-purulent discharge appears. An increase in body temperature is possible.

Purulent complications are accompanied by active edema of the Bartholin gland with the appearance of intense pain syndrome and signs of general malaise. The symptoms of bartholinitis in women are especially pronounced during the formation of an abscess. Infectious complications, up to the progression of sepsis.

Acute bartholinitis

Acute bartholinitis has the most striking clinical manifestations.Cause of severe pain, especially while walking. With an exacerbation, there are favorable conditions for the active reproduction of opportunistic microorganisms. Therefore, the inflammatory process often leads to formal purulent diseases.

The specialist prescribes antibacterial agents, drugs that relieve pain and restore the normal state of health of a woman. At an early stage, local cold is used to relieve the acute process, which is applied to the external genital area.The inflamed area is located with antiseptics, ointments with ichthyol are applied.

The development of acute bartholinitis can provoke the following adverse factors and diseases:

  • non-observance of personal hygiene rules;
  • the use of tight underwear, especially important natural ventilation of the skin;
  • exacerbation of gynecological diseases, including thrush;
  • damage to the mucous membrane of the genitals, penetration through small abrasions of infectious pathogens from the rectum, vagina and urinary tract;
  • hypothermia of the body;
  • vitamin deficiency;
  • severe stress;
  • hormonal changes in the body.

Infectious pathogens penetrate the Bartholin gland, enter the bloodstream or through small injuries of the external genital organs.

It is important to prevent the transition of the disease into a chronic form. The long course of the disease leads to the formation of abscesses that require surgical intervention.

Chronic bartholinitis

If bartholinitis does not undergo effective treatment at the initial stage, the inflammatory process can take on a relapsing course.Treatment of chronic bartholinitis is more difficult and often requires surgical interventions.

During the period of remission, the disease has no pronounced symptoms. An exacerbation can be provoked by sexually transmitted diseases, menstruation, hypothermia, infectious processes in the pelvic organs. The chronic form of the disease is manifested by the preservation of a small process in the labia. Periodically, pus may be released from it. The woman is tormented by dull pains in the genital area.The pain syndrome intensifies during active movements. During sexual intercourse, unpleasant sensations may occur and angerful separation from the inflamed Bartholin gland may increase.

Bartholinitis and pregnancy

In pregnant women, the activity of the immune system decreases, which can provoke inflammation of the Bartholin gland. Sometimes it recurs early or late. Gynecologists are involved in the treatment of bartholinitis during pregnancy. Professionals should apply immediately after the appearance of colored lips and any discomfort.

Any infectious process can lead to miscarriage and other adverse consequences. It is forbidden to independently select medications that can have a teratogenic effect on the developing fetus. The gynecologist will select the necessary local remedies that stop the inflammatory process and the spread of infection.

Diagnostics of diseases

The diagnosis is made based on the results of examination and laboratory tests. It is necessary to differentiate bartholinitis with paraproctitis, a furuncle of the labia, malignant formations of the Bartholin gland.Specialists carry out microscopic diagnostics, bacterial cultures of vaginal smears. The PCR study is carried out for the exact infectious agent.

A woman, in addition to a gynecologist, may need the help of other narrow-profile specialists, especially with frequent relapses of the inflammatory process, which may indicate a latent course of endocrine pathologies, autoimmune diseases. Bartholinitis occurs at a young and middle age, during the period of preservation of reproductive function, when there is an increased activity of the Bartholin glands, which moisturize the external genital organs.If gynecologists detect neoplasms in the labia area in postmenopausal women, it is imperative to carry out additional cytological diagnostics in order to exclude the likelihood of the growth of malignant tumors.

Treatment of bartholinitis

For bartholinitis, use both conservative and surgical methods of treatment. Complicated forms of the inflammatory process are indications for the use of antibiotics, the appointment of physiotherapeutic procedures and local remedies.Antibacterial drugs are selected based on the results of laboratory diagnostics. They must have a wide range of actions.

Local antiseptics are used several times a day. To eliminate signs of fever and pain, specialists prescribe non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. From physiotherapeutic procedures, UHF, UFO are used.

In the chronic course of the gynecological disease of bartholinitis, women are prescribed an operation. It takes place in a hospital and involves the removal of the Bartholin gland or the opening of the pathological cavity with the artificial formation of a new duct.Surgical intervention prevents further relapses of the inflammatory process and abscess formation.

The indication for the operation is the frequent recurrence of bartholinitis. Brushes after removing it. The prolonged course of bartholinitis, especially in adulthood, is dangerous with complications and the frequent formation of abscesses.

What to do in case of exacerbation of bartholinitis

Consult your doctor first. He conducted an examination, appointed the results of laboratory tests and research results.At an early stage, you can limit yourself to local anti-inflammatory drugs, antiseptics and drugs with antibacterial properties.

Recurrence of diseases requires poor health. It is necessary, if possible, to observe bed or half-bed rest, avoid hypothermia and overheating. It is forbidden for a woman to take hot baths, since the high temperature of the water can provoke bleeding, spread blood flow to healthy organs and the system. Forbidden sexual intercourse until complete recovery and the disappearance of acute symptoms of the disease.


Prevention of bartholinitis consists in eliminating the actions of the main predisposing factors. It is recommended to avoid exposure to the external genitalia. To prevent the spread of infection, it is necessary to use comfortable underwear made from natural fabrics. If endocrine diseases are detected, it is recommended to be examined by an endocrinologist, who will prescribe an effective treatment. Follow the completeness of the diet: a weakening of immunity against the background of a lack of nutrients is a provoking factor in bartholinitis.

Prevention also includes the use of reliable contraceptives that prevent infection with sexually transmitted infections. It is necessary to spread infectious agents.

Cost of treatment

The cost of bartholinitis treatment is determined by the methods used. The price includes drug therapy, diagnostic and physiotherapy procedures. In our clinic, bartholinitis treatment is available for most women. Specialists conduct consultations, examination, comprehensive examination and prescribe affordable and effective treatment methods.

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90,000 Vulvar diseases

Diseases of the vulva

Lesions and diseases of the vulva are manifold. These include dematosis: atopic dermatitis, atrophic changes against the background of a hypoestrogenic state, neurodermatitis, allergic contact dermatitis, intertrigo (mechanical dermatosis), psoriasis, lichen sclerosus, lichen planus and others; vulvar cysts, vestibular papillomatosis, benign vulvar tumors, systemic diseases, vulvar infections and others.All of these diseases are accompanied by hyperemia (redness) and itching, burning, but the correct diagnosis is possible only upon examination by a doctor and sometimes using an additional method – vulvoscopy.

Treatment and examination of dermatoses include the consultation of two specialists – a gynecologist and a dermatologist.

Let’s consider each disease separately.

Atopic dermatitis of the vulva

is the most common type of dermatitis. About 20% of the population suffers.It usually occurs in young girls who have inherited or suffer from an atopic disorder (bronchial asthma, allergic reactions, hay fever, urticaria). Atopic dermatitis is prone to relapse and is accompanied by severe itching. The disease became clear recently, when a hereditary defect of keratinization was found in those suffering from it, which increases the permeability of the epidermis and leads to its dryness. Allergens, irritants and pathogenic microorganisms easily penetrate into small cracks of the dried epidermis.Soap or hygiene products, increasing the damage to the barrier function of the epidermis, contribute to the penetration of other irritating substances and allergens into its defects. Atopic dermatitis occurs as a result of a complex interaction of irritating and allergenic chemicals or drugs against the background of a hereditary immunodeficiency state, in some cases against the background of a hereditary defect in the barrier function of the epidermis, skin infections, fungal, bacterial, protozoal or viral, lead to exacerbations of atopic dermatitis due to direct action and additional allergization.Most often causes and maintains exacerbations of atopic dermatitis Staphylococcus aureus.
The main symptoms of atopic dermatitis – “itching – scratching – itching” and oozing (moisture), lead to a sharp thickening of the skin with impaired pigmentation and the appearance of a rash. Scratching becomes the gateway to secondary infection. Often the cause of an exacerbation is alkaline soaps and personal hygiene products, fragrances that are part of them, and even wet sanitary napkins. Skin changes depend on the age of the process.Most often, the labia majora are affected, somewhat less often the small or inner thighs and the intergluteal fold.

In treatment, first of all, it is necessary to eliminate the causes and triggering factors of dermatitis.

Neurodermatitis of the vulva

is a disease that is a transition from atopic dermatitis, which leads to a vicious circle of “itching – scratching – itching”. Synonyms for vulvar neurodermatitis are “simple chronic lichen”, “hyperplastic dystrophy”, “scaly hyperplasia”.Skin changes are the same as in atopic dermatitis, but mental stress is an important trigger. The most common symptom of vulvar neurodermatitis is persistent pruritus, often over the years, aggravated by warmth, menstruation and stress. Combing is habitual, almost intrusive. The skin of the vulva thickens, becomes more or less pigmented, the process constantly spreads to the groin folds and thigh.Treatment is multifaceted and complex. There are frequent relapses.

Atrophic changes against the background of a hypoestrogenic state

Are accompanied by a drop in the level of the hormone estrogen in the blood, due to the onset of natural menopause and other conditions: removal of the ovaries, resection of the ovaries, ovarian dysfunction, the use of antiestrogens, selective suppression of estrogen receptors.

Before menarche (the formation of the menstrual cycle, puberty) and during breastfeeding, estrogen levels are relatively low.This leads to thinning and dryness of the vulvar and vaginal epithelium, with a weakening of its barrier function, predisposing to irritation and infection.

Atrophic vulvovaginitis, as this disease is called, is accompanied by symptoms such as burning and itching, soreness of the vulva, difficulty urinating associated with increased frequency and soreness, the appearance of pain during intercourse. The epithelium of the vulva and vagina becomes thinner and pale. Sometimes there is a narrowing of the entrance to the vagina, cracks and hemorrhages.In severe cases, there is a profuse discharge with an unpleasant odor.

Treatment includes hormonal therapy and antibacterial therapy in case of secondary infection.

Contact dermatitis of the vulva

is an inflammation of the skin caused by an exogenous irritant. It is important to distinguish simple contact dermatitis from allergic dermatitis. Both the one and the other can have an acute, subacute and chronic course. Vulvar contact dermatitis occurs as a result of permanent direct, non-immune-related chemical or physical damage to the skin.Its reasons are manifold, for example, the effects of urine, bowel movements. It is predisposed to it by a low level of estrogen, concomitant skin diseases, infection, trauma – everything that weakens the barrier function of the epithelium and makes the skin more sensitive to damaging influences. However, repeated exposure to chemicals leads to the development of true allergic contact dermatitis.
Vulvar contact dermatitis is a very common disease. Concerned about increased sensitivity of the skin, itching and burning of the vulva.Patients often resort to self-medication with antifungal drugs, antipruritic or anesthetic ointments, applying them already on the inflamed skin, and the medical workers who turn to these patients already find it difficult to establish the cause of contact dermatitis. Therefore, you should consult a doctor at the first concerns that appear, so that the doctor can identify the cause and prescribe the correct treatment. So, the most common causes of simple contact dermatitis of the vulva are: soap and soap substitutes, urinary and fecal incontinence, sweating, vaginal discharge, irritation with pads and underwear.

Treatment is phased, with the exclusion of the cause of the disease.

Allergic contact dermatitis of the vulva

It is a severe allergic reaction to small amounts of a chemical.
Allergic contact dermatitis of the vulva usually begins acutely, as opposed to simple contact dermatitis. Itching and burning occurs suddenly. Sometimes the patient herself indicates the reason. Itching can be combined with a burning sensation. The reason may be some kind of irritating factor: highly alkaline or highly scented soaps and soap substitutes, highly scented pads and other allergens, the list of possible allergens is very large.Often, by the time of treatment, the disease takes on a subacute or chronic phase of the course. A severe acute inflammatory reaction is accompanied by hyperemia (redness), the formation of vesicles (vesicles), and even blisters, oozing (moisture), scratching with bloody or yellow crusts, sometimes a secondary infection joins.

Treatment is based on different methods, but first of all, the elimination of the main allergen is, otherwise it is unsuccessful.

Intertriginous dermatitis of the vulva

Is an inflammation of the skin in the folds caused by friction, exposure to heat, sweating, moisture accumulation under clothing.The disease is especially common in women with deep skin folds.
Its main reason is the friction of the contacting surfaces of the skin and their maceration then in the heat. Inflamed, weeping surfaces are easily infected with bacteria and fungi of the genus Candida (popularly called “thrush”). Moisture, tight-fitting clothing made of synthetic fibers, urinary and fecal incontinence predispose to the disease. Patients with obesity and diabetes mellitus, in particular the elderly, in whom obesity is combined with immobility and incontinence of feces and urine, are especially often affected by intertriginous dermatitis of the vulva.Such dermatitis is characterized in the femoral – genital and inguinal folds, and in the overhanging fold in the lower abdomen, and on the skin under the mammary glands, increased skin sensitivity, burning, and an unpleasant odor expressed to one degree or another. The skin in all of these folds is subject to constant friction. This type of dermatitis should not be confused with psoriasis, lichen sclerosus, benign familial pemphigus.

Complex treatment, with the addition of a secondary infection, antibiotic therapy is also indicated.

Psoriasis of the vulva

– chronic hereditary dermatosis, which is characterized by reddish papules and plaques, covered with tightly attached silvery-white scales. Psoriasis affects 2% of the population. The defeat of the vulva with it is often observed, but in many cases it remains unrecognized, since patients and doctors do not notice it. When referring to dermatologists, patients do not present corresponding complaints.
The provocateur of vulvar psoriasis are minor injuries (friction, scratching), infections (bacterial or fungal), chemical irritants (cosmetics), and some medications.Mental stress weakens the barrier function of the epidermis (skin). Rash of psoriasis at the site of scratching due to itching accompanying depression and anxiety. Promotes the manifestation of psoriasis and fluctuations in hormone levels. The most common occurrence of vulvar psoriasis occurs during puberty and menopause. It provokes the development of alcohol consumption and smoking. The rash of psoriasis of the vulva is mainly promoted by trauma to the skin. The main concern in psoriasis is itching of varying intensity.It causes scratching, which in turn leads to burning and pain.

Treatment of vulvar psoriasis is complex and consists of local and systemic therapy.

Vulvar lichen sclerosus

One of the chronic inflammatory dermatoses most commonly affecting the vulva.
It is characterized, including on the vulva, by thinning and depigmentation of the skin and scarring, anxiety about itching, burning, less often pain. Lichen sclerosus leads to deformation of the vulva and related functional disorders.The prevalence of this disease is unknown, since the disease is not always accompanied by complaints, as a result of which some patients do not go to doctors. Lichen sclerosus occurs at any age, from 6 months to old age, but mainly between 40 and 70 years. The causes and development are due to many factors: hereditary, related to cellular immunity (T and B-lymphocytes) and autoimmune, hormonal, infectious, local. It has been linked to certain HLA class II antigens, antibodies to certain tissue antigens, and autoimmune disorders.The role of hormonal factors is confirmed by the fact that the disease often begins against the background of estrogen deficiency – in childhood or postmenopausal women. It has been suggested, but not proven, androgen metabolism disorders. However, the etiological role of hormones has not yet been proven. The development of lichen sclerosus is also associated with pathogenic microorganisms, especially the spirochete Borrelia burgdorferi, but apparently it is not the true causative agent of the disease. The role of other microorganisms has not been confirmed either. However, there is no doubt about the importance of local influences, from scratching to radiation exposure, as triggering factors.The clinical picture is varied. Typical complaints of itching or its combination with raw pain, increased skin sensitivity, difficulty urinating associated with increased frequency and soreness, pain during intercourse.
In 20% of cases, foci of lichen sclerosus are found in other areas of the skin, usually on the neck, in the armpits, and on the mammary glands. The vaginal mucosa is not affected. Occasionally, there is a lesion of the oral mucosa.

Treatment includes local and general therapy.

Lichen planus of the vulva

Relatively common dermatosis and mucositis (inflammation of the oral cavity), mediated by the mechanisms of cellular immunity. Usually, the skin and oral mucosa are affected, in 25% of cases only mucous membranes. Damage to the oral mucosa in women in 57% of cases is accompanied by damage to the vulva and vagina. The true prevalence is unknown, as it often remains undiagnosed. Even in patients with lesions of the oral mucosa and skin, the genitals are not always examined.Synonyms: erosive lichen planus, desquamative inflammatory vaginitis, vulvovaginal – gingival syndrome.

The causes of lichen planus are unknown, but many data clearly indicate its autoimmune nature, mediated by mechanisms of cellular immunity. Recent evidence suggests there is a link between the HLA antigen DQB1 * 0201 and lichen planus of the vulva, vagina and gums. There is a widespread damage to the basement membrane zone of the epidermis, apparently of an autoimmune nature.

Clinical options:

  • Classic – itchy polygonal papules and plaques on the wrists and ankles, on the pubis and labia, but not accompanied by atrophy and scarring;
  • Vulvovaginal-gingival syndrome is an erosive lesion of the mucous membranes of the mouth, vulva, conjunctiva and esophagus with atrophy and scarring.

Damage can be on the scalp, and on the nails, eyes, mucous membranes of the mouth, nose, esophagus, larynx, bladder, anus.In most cases, the disease develops between the ages of 30-60 and is accompanied by a variety of complaints. The most common of these are soreness to touch and pain, and itching, singly and in combination. However, complaints, even with characteristic changes, are not always the case. Sometimes itching can join, which manifests itself in different ways depending on the form.
The picture of changes in the vulva depends on the variant of the disease. In most cases, there are red erosion with scalloped “lacy” whitish edges.Their surface is often shiny, glassy. But there may be small papules and plaques, purple with peeling, localized on the pubis, labia majora, and thighs. Scratching promotes the spread of rashes and is accompanied by secondary changes. With these pictures, the vulva loses its normal structure over time and untimely treatment. Often, damage to the vulva and vagina is preceded by damage to other areas of the skin and mucous membranes. Diagnosis is clinical and biopsy.Sometimes lichen planus is accompanied by lichen sclerosus.

Treatment includes local and general systemic therapies.

Vulvar cysts

On the vulva, cysts of various sizes and origins can sometimes be found, which appear as a result of inflammation or injury.
Bartholin gland cysts can be seen with the naked eye.
The clinical picture of the inflammatory process of the Bartholin gland and its excretory duct depends on the anatomical structure.The Bartholin gland is located deep in the thickness of the muscles of the perineum. Several small excretory ducts emerge from it, merging into an ampulla, from which then the main excretory duct of great length comes out, but narrowing towards its outer opening. The excretory duct of the gland is affected more often than she herself. Diseases of the Bartholin gland and its duct – Bartholinitis – include: canaliculitis, Bartholin gland abscess, Bartholin gland cyst, rarely endometriosis.
Small sebaceous retention cysts are observed over the entire surface of the labia, more often between the area of ​​hair growth and the labia minora.They contain a yellowish content. As a rule, only itching is worried. Often, when viewed through a colposcope, small erosive surfaces are found. Sometimes cysts are large.

Treatment is conservative, operative in advanced cases.

Vestibular papillomatosis

It is a collective term that clinically includes typical small acute warts caused by human papillomavirus infection and micropapillomas (pseudocandylomas), which are not associated with human papillomavirus infection.It is often asymptomatic, discovered by chance, although sometimes accompanied by leucorrhoea, pain and burning sensation of the vulva, the manifestation of pain during intercourse.

Treatment is indicated for anxiety. A biopsy followed by surgical treatment is sometimes required, depending on the situation. The approach is individual. The main tactic for this disease is observation by a gynecologist.

Benign tumors of the vulva

Tumors of the vulva are diverse and require surgical treatment followed by histological examination.

Systemic diseases

The most pronounced changes on the vulva are observed in Behcet’s disease and Crohn’s disease.

Vulvar infections

These are various inflammatory diseases, the symptoms and colposcopic picture of which depends on the type of pathogen.
Vulvar infections include genital herpes, chlamydia, ureaplasmosis, condylomas, molluscum contagiosum, mycoses, scabies, enterobiasis, pediculosis, furunculosis, donovanosis, syphilis, tuberculosis, venereal granuloma, human papillomavirus.

Treatment depends on the type of pathogen.

to be tested in the KDLmed laboratory

Bartholin’s glands are located in the thickness of the labia majora, at their base, one on each side of the vaginal opening. Their excretory ducts open on the inner surface of the labia minora. They secrete a viscous fluid that lubricates the inside of the vagina during intercourse. When the excretory duct is blocked, fluid begins to accumulate in the gland, which leads to the formation of a cyst.Outwardly, it looks like a rounded swelling, usually on one side of the vagina.

Cyst of the Bartholin gland occurs in 2% of women, more often between the ages of 20 and 29 years. Children do not have this disease, since the glands begin to function after puberty. In many cases, women are unaware of the presence of a Bartholin gland cyst; it is often detected during a routine preventive gynecological examination. However, with a large size, the cyst can cause discomfort, and the addition of an infection threatens with an abscess of the Bartholin gland.

Most often, the cyst of the Bartholin gland goes away on its own or after using outpatient methods of treatment. However, if the cyst is large or an abscess occurs, surgical and medical treatment may be required.

In general, the prognosis of the Bartholin gland cyst is favorable. This disease does not pose a threat to a woman’s life, although it can cause serious discomfort. In extremely rare cases, cancer of the Bartholin’s gland occurs.

Russian synonyms

Cyst of the Bartholin gland.

Synonyms English

Bartholin’s cyst, Bartholin’s abscess, vaginal lump, vaginal cyst.


In most cases, the cyst of the Bartholin gland does not cause any discomfort. With large cysts, pain and discomfort when walking and during intercourse are likely. With the addition of an infection, a woman may be disturbed:

  • discomfort when walking and sitting,
  • pain during intercourse,
  • fever.

General information about the disease

The excretory ducts of the Bartholin glands are thin canals. When these channels are blocked, fluid accumulates in the gland, which leads to its stretching and enlargement. The cause can be trauma, infection, friction during intercourse. Outwardly, the cyst looks like a rounded swelling with a smooth surface, which is located at the entrance to the vagina. Most often, the size of the cyst does not exceed 1 cm.In some cases, the cyst can reach a size of 8 cm.With a small size, it does not cause discomfort to a woman, it can be detected on its own or during a gynecological examination. With a large cyst, a woman may experience discomfort or even pain when walking and during intercourse. The gland secretes fluid necessary for intercourse, so the size of the cyst may increase after intercourse.

In some cases, infection of the fluid in the cavity of the gland occurs – an abscess of the Bartholin gland is formed. The cause of an abscess can be both opportunistic microorganisms (that is, living in the human body normally, but causing the disease only under unfavorable circumstances), and sexually transmitted infections.An abscess usually develops within 3 to 4 days. In this case, a woman may experience pain when walking and during intercourse, discomfort in a sitting position, and the temperature may rise. If the cause is a sexually transmitted infection, the woman may be bothered by genital discharge and other symptoms that are characteristic of a particular infection.

Who is at risk?

  • Women aged 20-29.
  • Women with sexually transmitted infections.


Most often, the diagnosis “cyst” or “abscess” is made already during the medical examination and on the basis of the patient’s complaints. However, sometimes additional laboratory and instrumental research methods may be required.

Laboratory diagnostics

General clinical trials

  • Complete blood count (without leukocyte count and ESR). The level of leukocytes may be increased, which indicates the addition of an infection and the formation of an abscess of the Bartholin gland.
  • ESR. Erythrocyte sedimentation rate. When the protein composition of the blood changes, the ESR may change. It increases with infections, including some sexually transmitted diseases (such as syphilis).
  • General urine analysis. With an abscess of the Bartholin gland, a large number of leukocytes can be found in the urine.

Diagnostics of sexually transmitted infections

  • Microscopy of the smear and subsequent culture of the vaginal discharge with determination of antibiotic sensitivity.With an abscess of the Bartholin gland, a diagnosis of sexually transmitted infections is carried out as a possible cause of the disease. To do this, use a microscopic examination of the vaginal discharge, as well as sowing on a nutrient medium to determine the sensitivity of the identified microorganism to a certain group of antibiotics. This is necessary to prescribe the most effective treatment.
  • Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) – allows you to detect antibodies (immunoglobulins) to certain infections, that is, specific proteins that are produced in response to the penetration of a microorganism.
  • Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) – allows you to identify the genetic material of the pathogen in biological material – blood, urine, urethral or vaginal discharge, tissue sample, cerebrospinal fluid.

Additional research

  • Biopsy of Bartholin’s gland. Taking a sample of the gland tissue with a needle after anesthesia. The sample is then examined under a microscope to detect changes in cellular composition.