A Brief Overview of Ovarian Cysts


Ovary is a very important organ of female reproductive system and it is present in pair one on both sides of uterus. Ovaries perform quite a number of functions in bodies of females. They not only produce female egg cells or gametes, but also help regulating menstrual cycle and pregnancy. In addition, ovaries produce female hormones for controlling the development of female body features such as breasts, body shape, hair etc. Sometimes small sacs are developed in ovaries called ovarian cyst. These sacs have very thin walls and contain fluid, gaseous or semi-solid substance. Some of its types are harmless, but other could lead to health problems which could range from vomiting and indigestion to infertility and even cancer.

Types and Causes of Ovarian Cysts

There could be different reasons for development of ovarian cysts. Therefore, these cysts are divided in different categories depending on the reason of their development.

One of the most common causes is enlargement of follicle during menstrual cycle. Cyst formed due to this reason called follicular cyst and contains egg.

One other type of cyst is called corpusluteum cyst. This is created when corpus luteum, which is to disappear if pregnancy is not conceived, fills up with fluid or blood.

Dermoid cysts are defined as the one that involve growth of other types of tissues like fat or bone.

Cystic teratomas are those cysts caused due to abnormal development of ovary tissues.

In some conditions, a female can encounter a situation in which multiple cysts are developed.

Symptoms and Diagnosis of Ovarian Cyst

Ovarian cyst generally does not show any particular and prominent symptoms, but in some cases, symptoms do appear and include severe pain in belly or pelvis either due to rupturing, rapid growth of cysts or bleeding into cyst of twisting of cyst around blood supply. Some other symptoms may also become obvious when the cyst has grown in size and include indigestion, loss of appetite, difficult bowel movement, irregular menstrual cycle, difficulty in urination and pain during intercourse. Presence of ovarian cyst can be diagnosed in a number of ways. As indicated already that many females never know that they have developed cyst in ovaries, these are mostly diagnosed during routine pregnancy checkup by ultrasound or during examination of pelvis. In case any or all of abovementioned symptoms appear, ovarian cysts are diagnosed either by ultrasound, CT scan or MRI Scan.

Treatment of Ovarian Cyst

The treatment of ovarian cyst depends upon age of patient, size and nature of cyst. Benign type of cyst does not necessarily need serious medical treatment, but malignant type is dangerous and must be treated properly. For determination of malignant nature of cyst, a blood test ‘CA-125’ is carried out. In case there are chances that cyst has potential for cancer, it is removed either by laproscopy or open laparotomy. Sample of removed cyst are sent to laboratory for detailed examination to ascertain the type of cyst. Benign types of cyst are normally harmless and disappear naturally within a period of three months.

Ovary is an important organ of female reproductive system. Small, thin walled sac filled with fluid or semi-solid substance called ovarian cyst are sometimes created in ovary due to a number of reasons. These could be benign or malignant in nature. Benign are harmless, but malignant ovarian cyst must be removed.


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