If a noticeable lump on your wrist becomes painful or limits the flexibility of your joint, you could have a ganglion cyst. At The Hand Center in Hartford, Glastonbury, Tolland, and Bloomfield, Connecticut, the experienced team of doctors offer several treatments for painful or large ganglion cysts, including surgery. Find out more about your options for easing the discomfort or pain of a ganglion cyst by calling The Hand Center nearest you or by requesting an appointment online today.
A ganglion cyst is a fluid-filled mass that forms in the soft tissues of your hand or wrist, most often near tendons or a joint.
The mass is not cancerous and feels like a firm lump when you touch it. The fluids inside the cyst are the same as the fluids that lubricate your joints.
While the cause of the cyst isn’t clearly understood, cysts tend to form when the tissue surrounding a joint moves out of place. Ganglion cysts can develop in people of any age but are most common in women between 20 and 40.
For some, ganglion cysts can be painful, especially when you apply pressure to the area or if the cyst presses on a nearby nerve. The cyst can be very small, the size of a pea, or it can grow to an inch or more in diameter.
If you have a painful cyst or one that interferes with the movement of your joint or tendon, you should schedule a diagnostic evaluation at The Hand Center.
To confirm a lump is a ganglion cyst, your provider at The Hand Center physically examines the lump and presses on it to determine the severity of your pain.
In some cases, X-rays are needed to ensure the cyst isn’t another type of growth like a tumor. You might also need to undergo an aspiration procedure, where your doctor draws out a sample of fluid from the cyst with a needle to ensure it relates to a ganglion cyst.
Generally, ganglion cysts that aren’t painful and those that don’t interfere with the movement of your joint won’t require treatment. However, if the cyst is painful or affects your joint function, you’ll need to have the fluid drained.
Your provider at The Hand Center might recommend limiting your activity and immobilizing your wrist to prevent the growth of a ganglion cyst. By wearing a splint and resting your wrist, the cyst can shrink on its own and release the pressure on the nerve that’s causing your pain.
In the event that a ganglion cyst is interfering with your wrist function, The Hand Center surgical team can remove the cyst and the tissue attaching it to the joint or tendon.
Even with surgical treatment, a ganglion cyst can return. Your provider can re-evaluate your condition and provide further treatment if necessary.
If you have pain or joint dysfunction due to a ganglion cyst, schedule a consultation with the experts at The Hand Center today using the online booking feature or by calling the office nearest you.