Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"Does removing an ovary make one less fertile?"
Is it true that getting an ovary removed makes you less fertile? I'm in my early 20s, and I might have to get an ovary removed. I wouldn't mind having fewer periods, but I don't want to actually have a harder time conceiving when I'm at a point in my life where that makes sense.
There are several reasons for having an ovary removed. Many times, they are removed for example because of a large ovarian cyst or endometriosis, especially if there is risk of the ovary twisting on itself or if there is a lot of pain that has not responded to medications. For the most part, having one ovary removed will have little effect on your body's functioning assuming that the ovary that remains is fully functioning. In other words, women who have just one ovary usually have no more trouble getting pregnant than women with two ovaries. Also, because the function of the ovaries in regulating the menstrual cycle is actually redundant, even with just one ovary you will still continue to have the same number of periods as before. As always the diagnosis and the management of your particular condition will require a physical examination by your personal physician. Setting up an office visit with your OB / GYN doctor is advised.
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