After a laparoscopy for an ovarian cyst, patients can resume normal activities within a day, according to WebMD. Patients should avoid exercise and strenuous activity for approximately one week following the surgery.
A laparoscopy involves a small incision made in the abdomen, and a laparotomy involves a larger incision, states WebMD. While both surgeries can be used to diagnose an ovarian cyst, a laparotomy may be preferred if cancer is a concern. A doctor may recommend surgery if there are cysts in both ovaries, the cyst is larger than 3 centimeters, a watched cyst does not get smaller in two to three months, or the patient is a postmenopausal woman. If the doctor believes the patient might have ovarian cancer, he may recommend that the patient see a gynecologic oncologist.
During a laparoscopy, a patient is normally put under general anesthesia, notes WebMD. The ovarian cyst may be removed through a cystectomy, which preserves the ovary and the patient's fertility. After the surgery, the cyst may grow back in the same or opposite ovary, and the only way to prevent this is removal of the ovaries. Risks of ovarian surgery include infection, pain, bladder damage, bowel damage, and scar tissue developing on the ovaries or fallopian tube.