Ganglion Cyst Symptoms, Removal, Treatment, Surgery

Read about ganglion cyst removal at home, ganglion cyst Symptoms, removal, treatment, surgery. Ganglion cyst on wrist, foot and ankle.

Ganglion cysts which are more commonly known as the ‘Bible cysts’ are nothing but lumps that grow out of the tissues of hands or feet. Seeing a one might immediately think of but these lumps are not cancerous and are harmless in most of the cases. These cysts look like a ‘water balloon’ that is projected outwards. They contain a colorless liquid or fluid which looks like the synovial fluid that lubricates our joints.

These lumps change shape and size depending on the activity of the affected joint. They might become large with an increase in the activity and shrink when kept at rest. They are either firm or spongy depending on their size. They mostly appear on the top of the wrist, the base of the finger on the palm side and the top of the end joint of the finger. Ganglion cyst mostly appears in women and hardly affects the children.

Ganglion Cyst Symptoms, Removal, Treatment, Surgery

Ganglion Cyst Symptoms, Removal, Treatment, Surgery

Let’s review about Ganglion Cyst Symptoms, Removal, Treatment, Surgery.

Ganglion Cysts Symptoms

Most of the diagnosis depends on the location of appearance of the lumps. They usually appear in the hands and feet. In very rare cases they appear in the knees as well. Usually these lumps are visible as they range from 2cm to 5cm. Therefore it becomes easier to identify them. In the case of hidden or occult ganglion the identification becomes difficult.

If the cyst puts pressure on the nerves that pass through the joint then it may cause pain and muscle weakness. The Ganglion cysts are round or oval in shape and might be soft or firm depending on their size.These may also be identified during the diagnosis as they allow the light to pass through them. Also the overlaying skin becomes thin in case of Ganglion cysts.

Ganglion Cysts Treatment

The initial treatment of the ganglion cyst is non-surgical as they are considered to be harmless.

Immobilization

The size of the ganglion cyst decreases if the affected joint is kept at rest. So the doctor asks the patient to keep the affected region at rest. This is achieved by splinting the wrist. After the size of the cyst decreases to be negligible the doctor prescribes exercises to strengthen the join and to improve the range of motion.

Aspiration

Mostly the cysts do not cause any kind of pain. If the cyst has a nerve running from the root joint then some pain may be caused. To reduce this pain the fluid from the lump is drained by pricking it with needles a number of times.

This approach is called as ‘aspiration’. Aspiration is avoided in case of ‘mucus cysts’ because in such cases it leads to further thinning of the skin.

70% of the cysts are treated with aspiration. The ganglion cyst often returns after aspiration as the root sheath is not removed. The region is often injected with steroid medication to prevent the cyst’s return.

This is a painless procedure and one will be able to leave the hospital straight after the process carried out.

Puncture

This method has a 95% cure rate. In this procedure, a suture is passed through the skin perpendicularly through the cyst and is left for three weeks. This also relieves the pain and the size of the cyst decreases. This method is not used widely because it has a great risk of infection.

Ganglion Cysts Surgery

Surgical treatment is not recommended largely as these cysts don’t cause any harm. People however resort to this method because the recurrence rate of the ganglion cyst after any non-surgical method is 40%. Also the people are more concerned with the aesthetics and want a permanent removal of the ‘ugly’ looking lump.

Arthroscopy

It uses small incisions to remove the cyst and is called the ‘ keyhole surgery’.The doctor uses a tiny camera and an arthroscope to look inside the patient’s joint.The cyst is removed from the root and its origin is completely destroyed to reduce the recurrence rate.

The removal of the portion of the capsule is the best because the recurrence rate falls to 4%. However, the surgeons don’t prefer this as the wrist function decreases. Splinting of the wrist for a week is strongly recommended after arthroscopy. Wrist movement after 3-5 days prevents stiffness.

Excision

Though arthroscopy leaves smaller and lesser scars an open surgery is chosen over it. In this a two inches cut is made at the affected site. The doctor removes the cyst along with the root sheath. There is almost no complication related to the surgery however permanent stiffness and might be encountered.

After the surgery the wound is kept clean in order to prevent infections. The affected region might be put in a sling in order to prevent bumps. The patient does well on couple of pain killers. One might experience stiffness and swelling in the region but it fades away with time.

Ganglion Cysts Treatment at home with home remedies

The doctor generally asks the patient to resort to the observation method. Earlier some heat therapy was given to the affected area and the swelling was expected to fade away. People also try to physically smash out the cyst by using a heavy book like a bible by compressing it. The cysts are expected to disappear with time.

About Dr. Arslan Malik

Dr. Arslan Malik
Arslan Malik is noted health blogger, public health activist, aspiring dreamer and avid reader. With doctor in pharmacy, he has worked closely with various health organizations, multinational pharmaceuticals and community health programs. Beside his professional practice, he has an avid interest in writing and teaching Physiology and Medicines. He covers variety of topics from Nutrition and Natural Care to Diseases, Treatments, Drug Interactions, Preventive Care and Clinical Research.

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