DEFINITION--Removal or repair of a cyst in the Bartholin's glands, two small
glands located in the vaginal lips.
BODY PARTS INVOLVED--Bartholin's glands; lips of vagina.
REASONS FOR SURGERY--Prevention of recurrent infection after an abscess has been
SURGICAL RISK INCREASES WITH
- Poor nutrition.
- Recent illness.
- Alcoholism or chronic illness.
- Use of drugs such as: antihypertensives; muscle relaxants; tranquilizers; sleep
inducers; insulin; sedatives; beta-adrenergic blockers; or cortisone.
- Use of mind-altering drugs, including: narcotics; psychedelics; hallucinogens;
marijuana; sedatives; hypnotics; or cocaine.
What To Expect
WHO OPERATES--Obstetrician-gynecologist, family doctor or general surgeon.
WHERE PERFORMED--Outpatient surgical facility or hospital.
- Before surgery: Blood and urine studies; laboratory examination of vaginal discharge.
- After surgery: Laboratory examination of pus or secretions from opened glands.
ANESTHESIA--General anesthesia by injection and inhalation with an airway tube
placed in the windpipe.
DESCRIPTION OF OPERATION--There are two methods to treat infected Bartholin's
glands. One is to remove them. The preferred method is marsupialization. In this
procedure, the edges of the glands are opened and the linings are folded back and sewn
shut. This forms a small pouch that drains easily. Sutures that will be absorbed by the
body are used to close the pouch.
- Excessive bleeding
- Surgical-wound infection.
AVERAGE HOSPITAL STAY--0 to 1 day.
PROBABLE OUTCOME--Expect complete healing without complications. Allow about 2
weeks for recovery from surgery.
† Use an electric heating pad, a heat lamp or a warm compress to relieve surgical--
- Wear cotton panties. Avoid panties made from nylon, polyester, silk or other
non-ventilating materials. Don't wear tight clothing, such as jeans. > Take hot baths
several times a day to relieve discomfort.
† To help recovery and aid your well--
being, resume daily activities, including work, as soon as you are able.
- Avoid vigorous exercise for 4 weeks after surgery. > Resume driving 4 days after
returning home. > Resume sexual relations when your doctor determines that healing is
DIET---No special diet.
Call Your Doctor If
† Pain, swelling, redness, drainage or bleeding increases in the surgical area.
- New, unexplained symptoms develop. Drugs used in treatment may produce side effects.