Ovarian cysts are fluid-filled sacs or pockets within or on the surface of an ovary. Women have two ovaries — each about the size and shape of an almond — located on each side of the uterus. Eggs (ova) develop and mature in the ovaries and are released in monthly cycles during your childbearing years.
Many women have ovarian cysts at some time during their lives. Most ovarian cysts present little or no discomfort and are harmless. The majority of ovarian cysts disappear without treatment within a few months.
However, ovarian cysts — especially those that have ruptured — sometimes produce serious symptoms. The best ways to protect your health are to know the symptoms that may signal a more significant problem and to schedule regular pelvic examinations.
Aug. 13, 2014
- Ovarian cysts. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. http://www.acog.org/~/media/For%20Patients/faq075.pdf?dmc=1&ts=20140523T1226073428. Accessed May 23, 2014.
- Lentz GM, et al. Comprehensive Gynecology. 6th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2012. http://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed May 24, 2014.
- Ferri FF. Ferri's Clinical Advisor 2014: 5 Books in 1. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2014. https://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed May 24, 2014.
- Liu JH, et al. Management of the adnexal mass. Obstetrics & Gynecology. 2011;117:1413.
- Muto MG. Management of the adnexal mass. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed May 23, 2014.
- Hoffman MS. Differential diagnosis of the adnexal mass. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed May 28, 2014.
- Muto MG. Approach to the patient with an adnexal mass. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed May 23, 2014.
- Ovarian cysts fact sheet. Office on Women's Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. http://www.womenshealth.gov/publications/our-publications/fact-sheet/ovarian-cysts.html. Accessed May 23, 2014.