Busy Philipps recently posted a sweet photo on Instagram of herself and her BFF Michelle Williams wearing matching "best friend" leather jackets when they went out to celebrate Michelle’s birthday. Unfortunately, as her next Instagram post shows, the night didn’t turn out so great.
“Last night ended super weird,” she began in a post that shows her in a hospital bed with an IV in her arm. “But if you listen to my podcast, you know our advice is always, don't be a hero, go to the doctor. Anyway, I had a crazy excruciating pain in my lower right side and after a long time at Mass Gen, it was determined my ovary had flipped over—it's called torsion.”
“Mine flipped back by itself and I'm OK but sometimes if it doesn't you have to get surgery or you can lose your ovary (which actually happened to a really good friend of mine),” she continued. “Anyway, my point of posting this was I felt like an idiot for going to the hospital but ultimately, going was the right move! It always is! Even if they say you're fine and send you on your way! And a huge thank you to the amazing doctors and nurses who took care of me!”
An ovarian torsion is what happens when your ovary gets twisted, according to the Mayo Clinic. It’s possible for it to occur spontaneously, but having a cyst increases the odds this will happen because it adds weight to your ovary.
Ovarian torsions aren’t common, although they’re more likely to happen in younger women. One study published in the journal Paediatrics estimates that they happen in 4.9 out of every 100,000 women under the age of 20, with the odds going down as you age.
They're also dangerous because they can stop the blood supply to the ovary, says women’s health expert Jennifer Wider, M.D.—and that can cause the ovary to die. Wider describes the feeling as “sharp, acute pain one side of the abdomen” that comes on suddenly. It can also come with nausea and vomiting, she says.
If you experience these symptoms, you need to seek medical care immediately for an evaluation and treatment, Wider says. Sometimes ovarian torsions will flip back over on their own, like what happened to Busy, but other times immediate surgical intervention is required.
Luckily, Busy seems to be fine now. She’s since posted a photo on Instagram of herself and Michelle sitting on a dock together. But she makes a really good point: Don’t brush things off when it comes to your health. If something feels off to you, see a doctor. The worst that can happen is they say you’re fine.
This article originally appeared on Women's Health