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Ovarian cysts (cysts) are benign changes that ladies of all ages can have. And although cysts do not always require treatment, even the smallest ovarian cysts need to be systematically monitored. The causes of ovarian cysts may be different: polycystic ovary syndrome, endometriosis, and a tendency to them can also be inherited. Find out what types of ovarian cysts are and how to treat them.

Ovarian cysts(cysts) can be compared to balloons filled with fluid or thickened tissue. They can arise in one or both of the ovaries. Usuallythe ovarian cystis the size of a nut, but sometimes it is larger than an orange. Like uterine fibroids, cysts can be located inside the ovary, in its wall, or outside (then they stick to the ovary with a thin stalk).

Ovarian cystsusually do not cause discomfort, so you find out about them during the follow-up ultrasound examination. Only when they are very large, you may have, for example, abdominal pain, flatulence, constipation, and urinate frequently.How do ovarian cysts formand which of them require surgical removal?

Functional ovarian cysts

In many women during their reproductive years, functional cysts develop in the ovaries. This happens when there are abnormal hormonal changes during the menstrual cycle. During normal ovulation, the mature Graaf follicle ruptures and an egg is released from it, ready for fertilization. A ruptured bubble turns into a so-called the corpus luteum that disappears if not pregnant. Sometimes, however, the Graaf's bubble does not burst, but grows. As a result, a follicular cyst is formed.

It also happens that the corpus luteum does not disappear (despite the fact that it has not been fertilized) and forms a cyst. Both types of functional cysts usually do not require treatment and will disappear after a few menstrual cycles. Sometimes, however, the gynecologist prescribes hormone therapy.

Sometimes, as a result of hormonal disorders, also immature Graaf's follicles turn into tiny cysts. This is called polycystic ovary syndrome. Such changes usually need to be treated with hormonal drugs. The treatment lasts for many years. The doctor selects drugs that regulate the menstrual cycle (most often these are contraceptives). They make the ovaries failcysts form and the ovaries themselves decrease in volume.

Endometroid ovarian cysts

Doctors estimate that every third menstruating woman has problems with the endometrium - the mucosa lining the uterus from the inside. Endometriosis is a disease in which parts of the mucosa have a tendency to detach and travel through the body.

They often get into the ovaries. From this tissue, the so-called endometroid cysts (sometimes called chocolate cysts because they are filled with thick, dark blood and look like chocolate). When such a cyst ruptures and its contents spill out into the abdominal cavity, peritonitis may occur. And this is no joke, because peritonitis can end tragically. To prevent this from happening, these types ofovarian cysts(endometroid) are most often removed with surgery.

Dermatoid ovarian cysts

The so-called dermatoid cysts (otherwise - leathery). It is known that they contain, for example, fat cells, hair, bone tissue, and even … teeth that come from an undeveloped fetus. The cause of their formation is not fully known. One theory is that stem cells (i.e. undifferentiated cells, from which any cell in the body can develop) accumulate in one place in the ovary and for some reason begin to differentiate, and therefore turn into fat or bone cells.

Ovarian cysts: diagnosis

In order to start treatment in time (hormonal, anti-inflammatory or surgical), you must first detectovarian cysts . This is possible if women systematically undergo transvaginal ultrasound. The Polish Gynecological Society recommends that every woman over 35 should perform them every year. Since hormonal treatment promotes the formation of certain types ofovarian cysts , every woman, regardless of age, who has been recommended this form of therapy, should undergo a transvaginal ultrasound every year (the first before using contraception to check if the ovaries are perfectly he althy).

Regularly performing this test also allows you to check the effects of therapy - if, for example, hormone therapy is used for functional cysts, the doctor can check how effective it is.


Normal ultrasound is not enough,ovarian cystsonly reveals transvaginal ultrasound. If the doctor detects a suspicious cystic-nodular change, he or she orders further diagnostics - hormonal tests, and sometimes also a so-called tumor markers (CA 125 and CA 199).

Are ovarian cysts hereditary?

Gynecologists don't think sowe inherit the tendency to form ovarian cysts. On the other hand, it is known that hormonal disorders favor the development of certain types of cysts. If the mother has such disorders, the daughter may also have problems with maintaining the hormonal balance in the body.

And if so, it may also be more likely to develop ovarian cysts than women without such an inheritance. However, it also does not mean that these ailments must occur. But genetically burdened women should keep their finger on the pulse and see their gynecologist regularly.

Ovarian cysts: treatment

If your doctor decides that you just need to watch the cysts, don't be alarmed. But if he says you need surgery, don't hesitate to make the decision, because ovarian cysts can be serious. Ovarian cancers also have the form of a cyst. Since - like other cysts - they usually do not cause any discomfort, they are often detected too late.

It also happens that the cysts twist, burst, causing bleeding into the peritoneum, sometimes cause ovarian abscesses, and sometimes damage the ovarian tissue (for this reason, the ovary must be removed later). A woman who has hadovarian cystsonce and is healed has a tendency to develop new cysts. In this case, he must do checkups. The attending physician decides how often (check-up visits at least once a year!).

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