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Radiology/Are likely benign findings always mentioned in the written ultrasound report?


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   I just had a transvaginal ultrasound due to menstrual irregularities/associated pain & nausea,and familial ovarian cancer history. The written ultrasound report found no abnormalities in my ovaries, uterus or endometrium. The written ultrasound report said "Ovaries/Adnexa: The right ovary measures 2.6 x 1.7 x 2.1 cm, and the left ovary measures 2.6 x 1.9 x 2.7 cm. Normal functional follicles without pathologic masses seen." No other mention of ovaries or related issues.

I requested the actual ultrasound images for my records, and when I viewed them, there was static text on all images that said "right paraovarian cyst seen," with no size given. Now, I DO realize that these type of cysts are most often benign and are pretty common. But still, wouldn't this usually be in the written report as a matter of policy? I do read written ultrasound/CT/MRI reports on occasion, due to my work at a hospital, so I had a general idea of what to expect. Usually, its seems that both potentially normal and abnormal entities are included in the written report. But I'm not a radiologist, so I wanted to see what you thought.
Are both benign and abnormal findings usually included in the written report by the radiologist? The report DID mention that I have an ante-positioned uterus, which I know is not necessarily normal, per se, but also extremely common and not harmful to health. But had I not requested the ultrasound images, I would have never known that I possibly have a paraovarian cyst. I know risk of cancer from these may be pretty low in general, but since I have a familial ovarian cancer history, I would have liked to have been informed, if only for self surveillance. I'm asking you because I don't want to question my radiologist's interpretation, without input about general practices of written ultrasound reports. Thank you.

Hello, Cynthia.

A good ultrasound study is dependent on the skills of the technologist, much like a painting is dependent on the skill of the artist. If the technologist sees "something" it is their job to record an image of it for the Radiologist to interpret. Many radiologists depend on the interpretation of the technologist for their final report.

Although Ultrasound techs are very skilled in interpreting the images, they are not always correct. I'm guessing that in this case, the tech saw something she described as a "right paraovarian cyst". She probably took a picture of what she described, and the radiologist decided it wasn't worth mentioning.

Rest assured that if there were any indication of cancer or danger from the "cyst", you would know. Believe me, radiologists tend to err on the side of caution.

If you are still troubled by this, don't hesitate to get a second opinion from another radiologist. It might be worth your peace of mind to do so.

Hope this helps,


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Delia White


I am not qualified to interpret diagnostic imaging or to diagnose disease. Please consult a physician for that information. I am the photographer. I can tell you what to expect during most MRI, CT and X-ray procedures.


I now have more than 30 years experience in diagnostic imaging. My specialty is MRI. I am also very familiar with CT and the way we used to take x-rays (everything's digital now)!

I received my Bachelor of Science degree in Radiologic Technology.

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