An organ of the female body which produces egg cells, as well as several hormones. The ovaries produce a mature egg cell approximately once per menstrual cycle.

Also, an analogous organ in other types of organism. An apple, for example, is the fertilized ovary of an apple tree; the "egg cells" being the seeds.

The ovary is responsible for secreting the female sex hormones estrogen, progesterone and inhibin in female humans of reproductive age. Estrogen, progesterone, and inhibin, in addition to GnRH (gonadotropin releasing hormone) from the hypothalamus and FSH and LH from the anterior pituitary are responsible for regulating the menstral cycle, in which a mature follicle in the ovary expells an egg (or if you prefer, an oocyte) through the fallopian tubes into the uterus to await fertilization.

I saw my ovary when I went in for my gynocologist exam yesterday. The doctor stuck in an ultrasound stick in me and probed around til my right ovary came on the screen. She suspects that I have polycystic ovary syndrome or PCOS for short.

My doctor offered to give me an ultrasound printout of my right ovary. I thought it was the coolest thing in the world and decided to scan it in. It is at

for your viewing pleasure.

The 4 dark spots in the blurry field are the follicles in my right ovary. My left one was a little shy and could not be found, perhaps because I was in the waiting room so long that my bladder felt as if it might burst.

O"va*ry (?), n.; pl. Ovaries (#). [NL. ovarium, fr. L. ovum egg: cf. F. ovaire. See Oval.]

1. Bot.

That part of the pistil which contains the seed, and in most flowering plants develops into the fruit. See Illust. of Flower.

2. Zool. & Anat.

The essential female reproductive organ in which the ova are produced. See Illust. of Discophora.


© Webster 1913.

Log in or register to write something here or to contact authors.