Ganglion cysts are among the most common lumps or mass affecting the hands. These are not cancerous in nature and are usually harmless. They take place in different locations. However, they usually occur in the back of the wrists.
These are fluid-filled cysts that can quickly change size, appear and disappear. Majority of ganglion cysts don’t require any treatment. However, there are available treatment options if the cyst has an unacceptable appearance, is painful, or interferes with functioning.
Board certified plastic surgeon Dr. Bram Kaufman provides ganglion cyst removal treatments to patients in Cleveland, Beachwood, Pepper Pike, Lyndhurst, OH, and surrounding communities.
Ganglion Cyst Symptoms
There is a visible lump in case of most ganglions. However, few smaller ones called occult ganglions may remain hidden under the skin. There are usually no symptoms in this condition. In rare cases, you may feel tingling, pain and muscle weakness if the nerve passing through the joint is pressured by the cyst.
Large cysts may need treatment because of their appearance. This is even when they are not painful.
Ganglion Cyst Treatment
Your surgeon will take a non-surgical treatment approach initially.
Your doctor may first recommend checking for unusual changes. This is when the ganglion is non-cancerous in nature and may disappear.
Ganglions often increase in size with activity. They may also put pressure on nerves and cause pain. A splint or a wrist brace may help in relieving symptoms. Ganglion may decrease in size as well. Your doctor may prescribe strengthening exercises for improving range of motion as the pain decreases.
Fluid may be drained from the ganglion if it severely limits activities or causes a lot of pain. This is done through a procedure known as aspiration. The treatment provider will numb the area around the ganglion cyst and puncture it using a needle to withdraw the fluid.
Aspiration doesn’t always eliminate the ganglion since the connection or ‘root’ to the tendon or joint is not completely removed. Ganglion is similar to a weed that keeps growing back if the root is not removed. In several cases, ganglion cysts return after the procedure.
The procedure is generally recommended for ganglion cysts that occur at the top of wrists.
Surgery is recommended if the symptoms are not relieved following nonsurgical methods. An excision is used for removing the ganglion cyst. The cyst as well as the involved tendon sheath or joint capsule is removed during the surgery. There is a small chance that the cyst may return following surgery.
Typically, excision is an outpatient procedure and you should be able to go home following a short period of observation. There may be slight tenderness and swelling following the surgery. You should be able to resume normal activities within 2 to 6 weeks.
Cause of Ganglion Cyst
Triggers for ganglion cysts are not yet known. However, they are more common in women and younger people between 15 to 40 years of age. The cysts are common among gymnasts as well because of repeated stress to the wrists.
Cosmetic surgeon Dr. Bram Kaufman receives patients from Cleveland, Beachwood, Pepper Pike, Lyndhurst, OH, and nearby areas for the ganglion cyst removal treatments.
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