Can ovarian cysts move around in your stomach?

Do you know what’s worse than a bellyache? A mysterious bellyache that just won’t quit. Unfortunately, it could be an ovarian cyst lurking around your pelvic region causing all kinds of chaos. But can these sneaky little suckers actually move around inside you like a game of hide-and-seek gone wrong? Let’s find out.

What Are Ovarian Cysts?

Before we get ahead of ourselves here, let’s review the basics. An ovarian cyst is a fluid-filled sac that forms on or within an ovary in women. These little bubbles can range anywhere from tiny and harmless to large enough to steal the spotlight at your next abdominal ultrasound.

Types of Ovarian Cysts

Not all cysts are created equal: there are two primary types:

Functional Cysts

The most common type, functional cysts develop as part of the menstrual cycle and usually resolve on their own without treatment necessary. There are two subtypes of functional cysts:

  • Follicular: Forms from a follicle that contains the egg when it does not break open for ovulation.
  • Corpus Luteum: Occurs when the empty follicle sac goes through rapid growth after releasing its egg during ovulation.

Non-functional (Pathological) Cysts

These fall into three categories based on where they come from:
Dermoid (or mature teratoma): Contains tissue such as hair, skin, teeth or other structures typically found elsewhere in your body.
Cystadenomas: Develop along with cells making up female reproductive organs
Endometriomas: Form due to endometriosis interfering with how ovaries function

While not incredibly common, having more than one type isn’t entirely unheard-of.


Unfortunately – or fortunately if you want to test how well you can freak out over nothing – most ovarian cysts don’t cause symptoms. It’s usually only the larger or growing ones that come with warning signs, such as:

  • Pain or discomfort around your lower abdomen (pelvic pain) especially during menstrual
  • Irregular periods and/or abnormal bleeding; but often not.
  • Changes in bowel habits like nausea, vomiting & bloating.

So… Can They Move Around?

Yes! Ovarian cysts can indeed move within the pelvic area – this is known as rotation.

Ovarian Torsion

This twist in fate occurs when a large cyst causes an ovary to twist on itself, cutting off blood supply which leads to severe abdominal pain and possible infection due to tissue death. Rarely life-threatening, it may require surgical intervention.

Cystic Fluid Movement

Functional ovarian cysts do have fluid inside them that MAKES THEM movable: they jiggle around like floating little bubbles on ultrasound instead of being anchored down rigidly by scar tissue (which would make them immovable).

That said, you also need gravity doing its job well for any type of inert object moving within the body cavity fluids. In standing up position all these fluid filled structures are pulled downwards towards feet anchoring them hereby restraining their mobility.

When Should You See A Doctor?

While most functional cysts go away without making much noise other than some weird twinges once in a while, complex ones or bigger ones with unusual features / grow anywhere between 4 and 12cm, that last longer than three months need proper examination alongwith regular follow ups at intervals consisting testing monitoring size.

Disclaimer: The content provided here is meant solely for informational purposes and should not be construed as professional advice. If you’re experiencing any troubling symptoms relating to possible health concerns seek qualified medical attention immediately.

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