The ovaries are two small glands, located on either side of the uterus, that are part of the female reproductive system. The ovaries produce female sex hormones and store and release eggs (ova), which can develop into embryos if fertilized by a sperm.
The female sex hormones (estrogen and progesterone) help control the menstrual cycle, breast development, and other functions. Approximately once a month, about 2 weeks before your next period is due, one of the ovaries releases an egg (ovulation).
Current as of: August 2, 2022
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine & Sarah Marshall MD - Family Medicine & Martin J. Gabica MD - Family Medicine & Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine & JoLynn Montgomery PA - Family Medicine