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J Emerg Med. 2009 May;36(4):388-90. doi: 10.1016/j.jemermed.2008.05.019. Epub 2008 Nov 26.

Novel technique for management of Bartholin gland cysts and abscesses.

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Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Women's Health, New Jersey Medical School, Newark, New Jersey 07101-1709, USA.



Definitive methods for treatment of a Bartholin cyst and abscess include placement of a Word catheter, marsupialization, application of silver nitrate, and surgical excision. Placement of a Word catheter is the most frequently employed technique for office and emergency department (ED) management. However, many institutions do not have the Word catheter available; in addition, the catheter has a tendency to dislodge before epithelialization, leading to recurrence of the cyst.


We have developed a simple technique for management of Bartholin gland abscess or cyst using readily available materials. This technique involves using a small loop of plastic tubing, which is secured to prevent expulsion before epithelialization of a drainage tract.


A 25-year-old woman presented to the ED with a Bartholin gland abscess. After administration of local anesthetic, a loop of tubing was placed, allowing for drainage of the abscess. The patient was discharged home with a course of oral antibiotics. At 3-week follow-up, the Bartholin gland abscess was found to be healed; the device was removed without difficulty, leaving two drainage tracts.


This technique may be used as an alternative to placement of a Word catheter for management of Bartholin gland abscess or cyst.

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