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Pelvic and Ovarian Masses

Pelvic masses may originate from gynecologic organs like the cervix, uterus and ovaries, or from other pelvic organs such as the intestines, bladder, bone and muscle. In reproductive age women common pelvic masses include physiologic ovarian cysts, dilated fallopian tubes, fibroids in the uterus, endometriosis or tumors. Tumors can be either benign or malignant. Pelvic masses in postmenopausal women are slightly more concerning, although the majority of these are benign. Symptoms of a pelvic mass include pelvic pain, pressure, bloating, pain with intercourse and irregular or postmenopausal bleeding. The evaluation involves a history and physical exam, laboratory blood work, and radiology imaging. Specialized blood work may be ordered as indicated, called tumor markers. Ultimately surgery could be necessary, either by laparoscopy or exploratory laparotomy. The surgery is tailored to the diagnosis.