Pediatric Surgical Associates
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Pediatric Surgical Associates
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Ovarian Mass

An ovarian mass is an enlargement of the ovary. It may be a cyst, which is fluid-filled, or a tumor which is a solid mass. Ovarian tumors are usually benign, but they may require surgery. Many newborn girls have cysts on their ovaries, with most going away on their own. Some cysts require drainage or surgical removal, but surgery is usually reserved for large cysts, recurrent cysts or those causing complications. Every attempt is made to save the ovary when removing benign masses or cysts. All cancerous ovarian masses need to be surgically removed. In children, ovarian cancer has a much higher cure rate than adult forms.

How are they found? 

  • Symptoms
  • Physical exam 
  • Xrays 
  • Prenatal ultrasounds 

Symptoms:

  • Feeling of pressure or fullness in the abdomen or pelvis
  • Firm, painless swelling in the lower abdomen
  • Frequent urination or urinary retention
  • Persistent abdominal pain
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Some patients have no symptoms 

Complications from cysts:

  • Ovarian torsion or twisting
  • Rupture
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