Allison Fisher talked about her “second chance” at life after losing 104 pounds. An ovarian cyst containing around 46 liters of fluid was surgically removed.
Alison Fisher began feeling chronic stomach pain in 2020, and her menstrual cycle became erratic, lasting nearly a year. The 20-year-old, however, chose to ignore the pain, claiming that she was scared to go to the physicians because her weight was usually the focus.
“I convinced myself that ignoring it would make it disappear,” Fisher said. “I was terrified, I was terrified.”
“Whether I was there for a cold or an ear infection, I was always told, ‘you need to lose weight. You need to lose weight,’” she explained. “What’s the point of going? What’s the point of listening to my body if no one will listen to me if they’re continually telling me I need to lose weight?”
The symptoms, however, intensified, and Fisher detected a tumor growing on her tummy. She became concerned after reading about ovarian cysts on social media. Her stomach was “rock hard,” making movement or standing uncomfortable for more than five minutes.
“I felt pregnant with ten children,” she said. “I couldn’t lay down on my stomach because it felt like all my organs were being crushed.”
Fisher ultimately saw a doctor shortly before Christmas 2022, when the bulk began interfering with her breathing capacity.
Dr. Martin Martino, a gynecologic oncology surgeon at Ascension St. Vincent’s, informed her that she weighed 104 pounds.
“What was extremely intriguing in Fisher’s case is that once we removed it, we checked at the other ovary since we could see it immediately, and the other ovary was twisted three times,” Martino explained. “It [the left ovary] was around 10 centimeters long, which helped us untwist it and spare [Fisher’s] future fertility and the chance to have children.”
After a successful surgery, Fisher described having the cyst removed as a “second chance” at life.
“I can see my feet again, which I haven’t done in years; I can stand a little longer; I feel so much lighter; I feel like a human,” she explained. “I can wear clothes and do activities that normal people can do; now, I am in the early stages of weight-loss surgery, and I am enthusiastic about what life has in store for me.”
“There are other folks out there in my shoes, other larger people who are just too afraid to go to the doctor because of their weight,” Fisher continued. “I just want kids to know they don’t have to be afraid.”
Ovarian cysts are frequent; according to the Mayo Clinic, “many women have ovarian cysts at some point,” and the majority “cause little or no discomfort and are innocuous.”
Large or ruptured cysts, on the other hand, “may produce significant symptoms,” including pelvic discomfort, fullness or heaviness in the belly, and bloating, according to the Mayo Clinic.