Vaginal cysts: Overview, Causes

Definition

A vaginal cyst is a closed sac on or under the vaginal lining that contains fluid or semisolid material.

Overview, Causes, & Risk Factors

There are several types of vaginal cysts, which can range in size from the size of a pea to that of an orange. Vaginal inclusion cysts are the most common. These may form as a result of trauma sustained by the vaginal walls or following an obstetric or gynecologic procedure, when the lining of the vagina doesn’t heal to its normal smoothness.

Gartner’s duct cysts develop in the space occupied by the Gartner’s duct, usually on the side walls of the vagina. This duct is active during fetal development but ordinarily disappears after birth. In some cases, however, portions of the duct may collect fluid and develop into a vaginal wall cyst later in life.

Benign tumors of the vagina are uncommon and are usually made up of cysts.

Pictures & Images

Female reproductive anatomy

External structures of the female reproductive anatomy include the labium minora and majora, the vagina and the clitoris. Internal structures include the uterus, ovaries and cervix.

Uterus

Uterus

The uterus is a hollow muscular organ located in the female pelvis between the bladder and rectum. The ovaries produce the eggs that travel through the fallopian tubes. Once the egg has left the ovary it can be fertilized and implant itself in the lining of the uterus. The main function of the uterus is to nourish the developing fetus prior to birth

Normal uterine anatomy (cut section)

Normal uterine anatomy (cut section)

The uterus is a muscular organ with thick walls, two upper openings to the fallopian tubes and an inferior opening to the vagina.The uterus is a muscular organ with thick walls, two upper openings to the fallopian tubes and an inferior opening to the vagina.


Review Date : 11/1/2009
Reviewed By : Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Medical Director, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, University of Washington, School of Medicine; Susan Storck, MD, FACOG, Chief, Eastside Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Group Health Cooperative of Puget Sound, Redmond, Washington; Clinical Teaching Faculty, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.

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