|What is it?
|A ganglion cyst is a common, harmless sac of fluid that
frequently grows around the wrist, hand, or fingers. It is
most commonly found on the back of the wrist. These cysts
may be a small as a pea or as large as a peach pit, and may
be painful and bothersome or may not cause any problems at
all. Some cysts may go away without treatment, but if the
cyst is an annoyance treatment is available.
|Signs and Symptoms of this
- A soft mass or lump that may increase or decrease in
- The area around the cyst may be tender or painful
- If on the palm side of the wrist, you may have
numbness or tingling in your fingers
- The exact cause of ganglion cysts is unknown
- Injury or repetitive stress may play a role in some,
but not all cases
- Risk factors include being female, 20-50 years old,
and participating in gymnastics
|Prevention / What You Can Do
Ice and Ibuprofen (check with your doctor first) can be used
to relieve pain and swelling. You SHOULD NOT attempt to
smash or crush the cyst.
Prognosis is good based on the fact that the cyst is
harmless and in most cases does not interfere with
participation in activities.
There are both surgical and non-surgical treatments
available. Surgery is typically only needed if there is
significant pain or if the cyst is pushing on nerves in the
wrist. Another treatment option, called aspiration, uses a
needle to remove the fluid in the cyst. An anti-inflammatory
injection is typically used along with this treatment.
Immobilization of the area involved may also be used to
reduce the size of the cyst.
The information on this website is meant for patient
education and to provide home treatment options for some
common muscular and skeletal injuries. It is not intended to
replace your health care provider. Many are actually
intended for use by your health care provider through
referral to the website for appropriate self-care
interventions. If your symptoms get worse; are not improving
in two weeks despite treatment; or new unexplained symptoms
develop, you should contact or follow-up with your health