A 28-year-old woman who is bedridden due to a fist-sized cyst waits almost 6 months to have it removed.


A 28-year-old woman who is bedridden due to a fist-sized cyst waits almost 6 months to have it removed.


After waiting nearly six months to have an ovarian cyst the size of her fist removed, a woman has expressed her agony.

Natalie, 28, claims that the agony was so severe that it rendered her bedridden and unable to work.

The freelancer, a native of London, was diagnosed with anaemia as a teenager after experiencing terrible period pains and heavy bleeding.

When she received a two-year offer to relocate to Canada in 2019, she chose to switch from the combination pill to a hormonal IUD.

Natalie said she chose this route because it would be the simplest because she didn't know how the procedure would work while she was away.

I used to experience stomach pain that felt like cramps, but I ignored it, Natalie said to the Mirror.

I believe that we ignore that suffering either because we are encouraged to do so or because we are afraid of being called overly dramatic.

That discomfort would come and go every few months, but by the middle of 2020 it was daily, and I was having trouble climbing the stairs to get to work.

It wasn't until my then-roommate and partner persuaded me to visit the ER that I went and realised there was a problem.

In October 2020, she received an ultrasound from the medical team, which they told her will be followed up by an MRI to confirm the appearance of a mass on her ovary.

I was going to the ER all the time, and they only ever gave me extra-strength paracetamol and sent me home," Natalie recalled.

Since there are no opioids available in Canada, I had to use a stronger Ibuprofen. I later discovered that doing so caused my stomach lining to erode.

In November 2020, she had an MRI, which revealed that she had a cyst with a diameter of eight centimetres.

Natalie stated that the agony forced her to stop working in October, but the hospital didn't plan to remove the cyst until January.

She said: It was a full lifestyle change throughout the entire time I stopped working; I could hardly leave the house and couldn't stay up for extended periods of time.

The possibility of losing one of my ovaries was suddenly tough to hear because I am open to having children. Every time I went to the hospital, they told me they may take the ovary and you can function on one.

Her visa was about to expire at the end of December, but the cyst surgery still hadn't been planned.

In the hopes of having better luck with the NHS, she made the decision to relocate back to London.

Non-life-threatening procedures had been postponed because of Covid-19 throughout this time.

Nicola said: I can't sleep right now due to the discomfort, and I had to be mindful of when I took my medications. I feel awful.

"It was a never-ending circle of dull anguish. I used to be extremely active and ride my bike all over, but now that I was in pain, I didn't even have the motivation to do anything."

She went on: "I couldn't work from home, not even for my mental health; I was in too much pain.

I had to give in to my suffering and my body, but I also had to follow what my body was doing as it experienced a conflict between my physical and mental needs. There was nothing I could do, I felt that.

Natalie didn't feel heard until she saw a specialist at the Chelsea and Westminster Hospital.

When Natalie underwent a second MRI, it had expanded to 10 centimetres.

In March 2021, Natalie underwent surgery to have the cyst removed, but things didn't go according to plan.

"It was supposed to be keyhole surgery, but it ended up being the equivalent of a c-section," Natalie said.

She was thankful doctors were able to remove the cyst while leaving her ovary in even though she didn't learn about the c-section until she woke up. In July 2021, Natalie was able to go back to work.

Natalie is still healing from the procedure over a year later.

I still can't be as physically active as I once was, but I was able to resume working, so I looked at that as the silver lining, said, Natalie.

She believes that by sharing her experience, others, particularly women, would be inspired to stand up for themselves.

Nicola said: "I can relate to the medical professionals because they had a lot going on, we were experiencing a pandemic, and they were up against a lot of obstacles.

But there are a lot of things that could have gone wrong with this problem; you can't just treat it with two paracetamol.

After telling my tale numerous times and receiving the same response, "Well, there is nothing we can do," it would have been wonderful to have some consolation.

When I was told that I would be alright because I have another cyst, I expressed my concern that the size of my cyst and the discomfort it was creating might have been obstructing my ovary's blood flow.

She went on: "I was mentally exhausted by the experience because it was so continuing and solitary despite the fact that I had people in my life to support me.

Between October and July, a lot of what happened to me seemed to have blended into one day. I was unable to follow a schedule and was really discouraged by what was taking place.

"I was coping with issues related to my mental health; they kept happening. I got through it either by resiliency or being blissfully naive.

And I'm not sure if I've had enough time to think about the truly terrifying aspects of this event.

"No one in this world can know your body as you do," Natalie continued. "So, take the time to listen and if it doesn't seem right, pursue it."

It is preferable for it to be nothing or something solved than anything severe because they won't make a big deal out of it if you don't.

I think this is particularly for women. I discovered that a lot of ladies have experienced something comparable and felt ignored.

I would advise you not to accept a negative response.

"My life has changed so much since July 2020 to today, and it's terrible to realise when there is something you can no longer do, but you still need to grab the day," the author said.

According to a recent survey commissioned by the contraceptive pill Hana, 44% of women pick their form of contraception, so they don't have to go to a doctor's visit, which is similar to Natalie's explanation for why she changed her method of contraception.

A sample size of women aged 18 to 45 was included in the poll.

"This research demonstrates that women are feeling secure in themselves, they are embracing their sexual impulses, and they are clear on their future aspirations," Alison Slingsby from Hana stated. Their sexual identities, freedoms, and life choices all depend on contraception.

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