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Women's Health

Dangers of a ruptured cyst?



I have been reading through the site which I have to say has been VERY helpful, but can`t seem to find a difinitive answer on something. If an ovarian cyst ruptures, what are the ramifications for not getting an ultrasound? (I have no insurance) Is there a way to tell before its too late if you are bleeding internally? Also, if not secreting blood externally, is it normal to be "leaking" clear fluid?


Ovarian cysts are quite common -  in fact, they are part of the normal cycle for women.  The ovaries, in preparation for releasing an egg, produce what are called corpus luteum cysts.  Toward the mid-part of the cycle, the egg is released, and most of these cysts "disappear" to be ready for the next month.  Sometimes these cysts get large (1 to 2 inches), and sometimes they rupture, releasing fluid (usually clear, but sometimes bloody) into the pelvis. This can cause a woman pelvic (sometimes sharp, severe) pain.  Rarely will the cyst bleed enough to cause problems. 

The warning sign would be severe pelvic pain, usually on one side, that would almost double a woman over, and would last for more than a few minutes.  In cases such as this, it is best to get an exam right away, which may include a pelvic ultrasound. Cysts normally have nothing to do with external (vaginal) discharges or bleeding - that is hormonal.

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Response by:

W. Fred Miser, MD W. Fred Miser, MD
Professor of Family Medicine
Director of Ohio State Medicine Residency Program
College of Medicine
The Ohio State University