Ovarian dermoid cysts
Ovaries normally grow cyst-like structures called follicles each month. Once an egg is released from its follicle during ovulation, follicles typically deflate. Sometimes fluid accumulates inside the follicle, forming a simple (containing only fluid) cyst. The majority of these functional cysts resolve spontaneously.
While all ovarian cysts can range in size from very small to quite large, dermoid cysts are not classified as functional cysts. Dermoid cysts originate from totipotential germ cells (which are present at birth) that differentiate abnormally, developing characteristics of mature dermal cells. Complications exist, such as torsion (twisting), rupture, and infection, although their incidence is rare. Dermoid ovarian cysts which are larger or present complications might require removal by either laparoscopy or laparotomy (traditional surgery).