Signs & Symptoms of Dermoid Ovarian Cysts

Updated February 21, 2017

According to, dermoid ovarian cysts are usually benign and contain skin, hair, teeth or bone. They range in size anywhere from less than a 1/2 inch up to 17 inches in diameter. Dermoid cysts are usually detected in women in their childbearing years, but can occur at any time. Often cysts go unnoticed, producing very few symptoms, unless they rupture or become too large.


Dermoid ovarian cysts can cause pain to start and stop in the lower abdomen or pelvis. Sudden, severe sharp pain is a sign of a cyst. You may also feel pelvic pain after sexual intercourse of strenuous activities, like exercise.

Menstrual Irregularities

Menstrual changes are a sign of a dermoid ovarian cyst. Irregular periods, heavy bleeding, or bleeding between periods can occur because the cyst is interfering with your menstrual cycle. Also, long term pain felt in the lower back during your period can be a sign.

Urinary and Bowel Difficulty

Pain or pressure or a feeling of heaviness when urinating or during bowel movements can be caused by a cyst.

Digestive Symptoms

You may experience nausea and vomiting, as well as a full feeling in the lower abdomen.


Sudden or sharp pain especially accompanied with a fever and vomiting can be a sign of a ruptured cyst and requires immediate medical attention. If left unattended, the ruptured cyst can cause an infection.

Cite this Article A tool to create a citation to reference this article Cite this Article

About the Author

After accidentally stumbling into a journalism class at University of North Texas, Abby Vaun has been writing ever since. She honed her skills writing for "The Dallas Morning News" and as a copy editor for Earle Palmer Brown in New York City. From Dallas to New York to L.A., she has enjoyed freelancing for 10 years and expanding her knowledge through her profession.