Theca lutein cyst

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Theca lutein cyst is a type of bilateral functional ovarian cyst filled with clear, straw-colored fluid. To be classified a functional cyst, the mass must reach a diameter of at least three centimeters.

These cysts result from exaggerated physiological stimulation (hyperreactio luteinalis) and are usually associated with markedly elevated levels of beta-human chorionic gonadotropin (beta-hCG). They are thus associated with gestational trophoblastic disease (molar pregnancy), diabetes mellitus, alloimmunisation to Rh-D, and multiple gestations.[1][2] They have rarely been associated with chronic kidney disease (secondary to reduced hCG clearance) and hyperthyroidism (given the structural homology with TSH).[3] These cysts resolve after pregnancy.[4] Rarely, when the theca-lutein cysts are stimulated by gonadotropins, massive ascites can result. In most cases, however, abdominal symptoms are minimal and restricted to peritoneal irritation from cyst hemorrhage. Surgical intervention may be required to remove ruptured or infarcted tissue.[citation needed]

Women who smoke have a twofold increase for functional cysts.[citation needed]


  1. ^ Lauren Nathan; DeCherney, Alan H.; Pernoll, Martin L. (2003). Current obstetric & gynecologic diagnosis & treatment. New York: Lange Medical Books/McGraw-Hill. p. 708. ISBN 0-8385-1401-4.
  2. ^ William's Obstetrics (24th ed.). McGraw Hill. 2014. p. 50. ISBN 978-0-07-179893-8.
  3. ^ Coccia, ME (2003). et al. "Hyperreactio luteinalis in a woman with high-risk factors: a case report". Journal of Reproductive Medicine. 48 (127): 127–9. PMID 12621799.
  4. ^ Schnorr, John; Miller, Hugh; Davis, John; Hatch, Kenneth; Seeds, John (1996-02-01). "Hyperreactio Luteinalis Associated with Pregnancy: A Case Report and Review of the Literature". American Journal of Perinatology. 13 (2): 95–97. doi:10.1055/s-2007-994300. PMID 8672193.