Experts estimate that almost every woman has had at least one ovarian cyst during her reproductive years. Because of this, women in New York should understand exactly what ovarian cysts are.

Ovarian cysts are small sacs that grow in the ovaries. Each woman possesses two walnut-sized ovaries, which are located on both sides of her body and are the sites where her eggs develop. Over 95 percent of ovarian cysts require no treatment and disappear on their own weeks after they have developed.

Women of every age are at risk of developing ovarian cysts. However, women who are able to get pregnant tend to develop the cysts the most while women who have passed menopause tend to be the least affected.

There are multiple types of ovarian cysts. Follicular cysts can develop at the time of ovulation, outside of ovulation or when a matured follicle breakdowns. They cause pain in an estimated 25 percent of the women with this kind of cyst. Corpus luteum cysts are functional cysts that are asymptomatic and are typically located on one side. Hemorrhagic cysts occur when a cyst begins to bleed and can result in abdominal pain on the side of the body where the cyst is located. Dermoid cysts are benign tumors that typically occur in younger women and can be found with growths of certain tissues, like hair, cartilage and bone. Early menstruation, a history of ovarian cysts and infertility are risk factors for ovarian cysts. Women with irregular menstrual cycles and extra upper body fat are also at risk.

The failure to diagnose ovarian cysts may be an act of medical malpractice. A personal injury attorney may pursue financial damages against the negligent parties if the misdiagnosis resulted in the patient receiving delayed treatment for pain or if the cyst was found to be malignant.


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