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How do Ovarian Cysts Affect Fertility

Aarti R Nov 1, 2018
Ovarian cysts are sac-like structures formed in the ovaries, and they are of many types. But do they affect the fertility in women? Read on to find the answers...
Ovaries are female glands located in the pelvic area, one on each side of the uterus. The ovaries are of the shape of an almond and produce eggs and hormones. Female hormones are mainly produced in them. Two of the main hormones that are secreted in the ovaries are estrogen and progesterone.

What are Ovarian Cysts

Ovarian cysts are sac-like structures on the ovaries, in which fluid collects. They are among the common gynecological problems. They are very common and even if any woman has one, there are no serious symptoms that are observed.
Many times, a routine check-up can reveal a cyst in the ovaries, but many of these cysts go away without any treatment. However, there are some common symptoms that are observed when the cyst becomes bigger. Let us first take a look at the symptoms of cysts in the ovaries.
  • Abdominal pain and pressure
  • Difficulty in urinating and pressure on the bladder
  • Painful intercourse
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Sensitive breasts
Many times, if the cysts are not very painful, they get cured on their own. There are many types of ovarian cysts, and certain types affect fertility.

How They Affect Fertility

Fertility of a woman is affected by ovarian cysts, if and only if, these cysts interfere in the process of ovulation. Otherwise, many of them do not cause fertility problem. Let us take a look at their effect on fertility.

Functional Cysts

Functional cysts are a common type of ovarian cysts. It is also called follicular cyst which develops each time the ovary produces an egg. The functional cyst is generally very small and ruptures during ovulation. They usually shrink after ovulation. Surgery is not required for curing functional cysts. Functional cysts do not affect the fertility of women.


Cystadenomas develop on the outer side of ovaries and they do not need treatment. It always develops on the stalk of the ovaries and not inside the ovaries. Cystadenomas do not affect fertility in women. These cysts are benign and very rarely cancerous.

Dermoid Cysts

Dermoid cysts contain tissues like hair or skin instead of fluid. They do not affect fertility.

Polycystic Ovaries

Polycystic ovary syndrome (POS) causes infertility. They are small cysts in ovaries, developed due to hormonal imbalance caused during ovulation. In polycystic ovaries, there are multiple cysts developed in the ovaries.
Apart from infertility, there are many other problems experienced by a woman with polycystic ovary syndrome. These problems are hair fall, obesity, acne and irregular menstrual cycle. Infertility is also one of the problem associated with this condition.
Polycystic ovary syndrome decreases the number of times a woman will ovulate in her lifetime. This affects the fertility to a great extent. The treatment that is recommended for this condition is usually a hormonal therapy from an endocrinologist. This treatment involves hormones which help in inducing ovulation.
This was all about ovarian cysts and fertility. Remember not all of them cause infertility but do visit your gynecologist regularly.
Disclaimer: The information provided here is solely for educating the reader. It is not intended to be a substitute for the advice of a medical expert.