Hemorrhagic Corpus Luteum Cyst

Definition - What does Hemorrhagic Corpus Luteum Cyst mean?

A hemorrhagic corpus luteum cyst is a bleeding (hemorrhage means blood) corpus luteum cyst. The corpus luteum cyst is a fluid-filled sac formed from the yellow mass (corpus luteum) left in place of a degenerated follicle after the release of an egg (ovulation). It contains plenty of blood vessels, which have a thin wall and can rupture, mostly near the time of menstruation, leading to bleeding. In some cases, the condition can be potentially catastrophic due to significant bleeding and can also interfere with a woman’s reproductive potential.

FertilitySmarts explains Hemorrhagic Corpus Luteum Cyst

After the release of an egg, the ovarian follicle dies and becomes a yellow mass of cells called corpus luteum. If a woman gets pregnant, the corpus luteum remains, may even fill with blood and fluid, and turn into a cyst. This cyst (now a hemorrhagic cyst) carries a potential to rupture resulting in massive bleeding within the abdomen and its covering.

In most cases, these cysts disappear on their own except for a few that persist and will require surgery. Surgery becomes mandatory in the following conditions:

  • A cyst that bursts and gives rise to excruciating pelvic pain (it is considered as a medical emergency and treated immediately)
  • A cyst larger than 5 cm in diameter (can cause the ovary to twist on itself, cutting off the blood supply. Known as ovarian torsion, this condition can obliterate the remaining ovary and significantly reduce a woman's fertility)

In a woman is suspected of having a hemorrhagic corpus luteum cyst, the doctor carries out a pelvic ultrasound and/or a CT scan. The cyst is then followed up on a weekly basis or operated depending on the severity of symptoms and its size. If it goes away on its own, no treatment is needed.

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