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Operations: Marsupialisation of Bartholin’s gland

Insurance code: P0320


Introduction: This information is written by John Fairbank and is provided for the benefit of his patients. Additional information will be given during consultation in the clinic and during the pre-operative discussion. It is not appropriate for all surgeons’ individual practice or for all patients.

Purpose of operation: Marsupialisation of Bartholin’s glands is a simple procedure to drain a cyst or abscess in the glands that provide lubrication at the entrance of the vagina.

Description of procedure: The cyst or abscess in Bartholin’s gland is opened. The opening is enlarged. A swab is taken and the edges of the defect are closed with a series of dissolvable fine stitches. Anti-biotics are prescribed if there are signs of infection.

Anaesthetic: General

Length of stay: Day case or overnight stay depending on post-operative comfort
Post-operative management: Analgesia as required. A catheter is not usually required. A short course of anti-biotics are prescribed.

Potential complications. Complications at the time of surgery are rare. Post-operative complications are also rare. Recurrence cyst or abscess formation can be expected in about 10% of cases when further Marsupialisation can be carried out. Removal of Bartholin’s gland is rarely carried out as a final solution to recurrent abscess formation.

Post-operative consultation: A post-operative review at anywhere from 3 weeks to 3 months may be suggested depending on the indication for the surgery and the immediate post-operative course. Signs of infection should be reported to the General Practitioner or to Mr Fairbank as discussed during the post-operative period.

Relevant websites

Information on Bartholin’s cysts and abscess