Home > E. Pathology by systems > Genital system > Female genital system > Ovaries (Ovary) > ovarian cysts

ovarian cysts

Tuesday 2 September 2003

Benign Cystic Lesions of the Ovary, ovaraian benign cystic lesions

An ovarian cyst is any collection of fluid, surrounded by a very thin wall, within an ovary. An ovarian cyst can be as small as a pea, or larger than an orange.

Most ovarian cysts are functional in nature and harmless (benign). In the US, ovarian cysts are found in nearly all premenopausal women, and in up to 14.8% of postmenopausal women.


- polycystic ovary


- ovarian follicular cyst (ovarian functional cyst)

  • Any ovarian follicle that is larger than about two centimeters is termed an ovarian follicular cyst.
  • Some ovarian cysts cause problems, such as bleeding and pain.
  • Surgery may be required to remove cysts larger than 5 centimeters in diameter.

- ovarian non-functional cysts

  • ovarian dermoid cyst
  • ovarian endometriotic cyst (or chocolate cyst of ovary, endometrioma, endometrioid cyst, endometrial cyst). It is caused by endometriosis, and formed when a tiny patch of endometrial tissue (the mucous membrane that makes up the inner layer of the uterine wall) bleeds, sloughs off, becomes transplanted, and grows and enlarges inside the ovaries.

- ovarian cystic epithelial tumors

  • ovarian serous cystadenoma
  • ovarian mucinous cystadenoma

- ovarian germ cell tumors


- non-neoplastic ovarian cysts and functional ovarian cysts

  • follicular cyst (cysic follicle)
  • multiple luteinized follicular cysts (theca-lutein cysts; hyperreactio luteinalis)
  • large solitary luteinized follicular cyst
  • corpus luteum cysts
  • polycystic ovaries (sclerocystic ovaries)

- ovarian cystic tumors

  • ovarian serous cystadenoma
  • ovarian mucinous cystadenoma
  • ovarian teratoma
    • ovarian dermoid cyst
    • cystic struma ovarii

- ovarian inclusion cysts

  • surface epithelial inclusion cysts

- developmental cysts

- cysts of the rete ovarii
- ovarian epidermoid cysts
- ovarian endometriotic cyst

According to the lining cells

- granulosa and theca layers: luteinic cyst
- nonluteinized granulosa cells: follicular cyst
- luteinized granulosa cells: luteinic cyst
- ciliated cylindric epithelial cells: serous cystadenoma
- mucinous cylindric epithelial cells: mucinous cystadenoma


- hemorrhagic ovarian cysts

See also

- ovarian cysts in childhood


  • Fetal ovarian cyst (29 weeks)
  • Ovarian serous cystadenoma
  • Ovarian endometriotic cyst
  • Ovarian endometriotic cyst
  • Ovarian luteal cyst
  • Ovarian luteal cyst
  • Ovarian luteal cyst
  • Ovarian luteal cyst
  • Ovarian serous cystadenoma
  • Ovarian serous cystadenoma
  • Ovarian serous cystadenoma