What's a Ganglion Cyst and how does it work?
Ganglion cysts are a benign lump that may form at any tendon or joint in the body. The cyst is usually found near the Hand or wrist and filled with thick jelly-like liquid. Ganglion cysts can be very common. They range from just a few millimeters in size to many centimeters. If they are pressed on nerves, they can cause pain and decrease mobility. Sometimes, the ganglion cysts can be removed on their own but in other cases they may require Treatment .
Ganglion cysts most often occur around the wrist. However, they may also be found at the ankles, feet, elbows and shoulders. These cysts are more prevalent in women than in men, and most commonly affect people aged 20-40. Ganglion cysts are not dangerous but can cause discomfort and disrupt daily life.
Common Ganglion Cyst Causes
Although the exact reason for ganglion cysts remains unknown, experts think that it occurs when either the tendon or joint sheath is damaged or weakened. The tissue becomes weaker, which allows the fluid from the joints to leak out. This creates a small pocket and eventually it fills up with gelatinous material. You can also get repetitive stress injuries or Trauma .
Common Ganglion Cyst Treatments
The size, location and symptoms of ganglion cysts will determine the treatment. These are the most popular treatments:
- Ice Therapy - Ice can be applied to the area affected by ganglion cysts. It reduces swelling and relieves pain.
- You can reduce your pain by taking a rest from any activities that may be affecting the joint.
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAIDs), - These drugs can be used to reduce pain and inflammation caused by ganglion cysts.
- The doctor might use an aspirator to drain the cyst fluid. This can help reduce inflammation and pain. The cysts may return if this isn't possible.
- Surgery - This is a procedure that can be used to completely remove the cyst if other methods fail. Although surgery is often successful, there are risks of infection and scarring.
Most cases of ganglion cysts are treated without the need for surgery. If the cyst causes pain or restricts movement, however, you should seek medical attention.
Views of Experts and Professionals on Ganglion Cysts
Although ganglion cysts are uncomfortable and painful, experts agree they can generally be treated with aspiration. Although many opt to have the cyst removed surgically, there is research that shows aspiration can be just as successful in most cases. There are also fewer risks. According to research published in Hand Therapy, aspiration proved successful for 80 percent of patients and surgical removal in 90% of cases. Aspiration is less risky and requires less intervention, so it should always be the first option.
Tips and Natural Remedies for Prevention
A few natural treatments can help to reduce swelling and pain associated with ganglion cysts. Cold compresses can be applied to the area affected. This will reduce swelling and relieve the pain. Epsom salt baths can also be used to reduce swelling and stiffness. Stretching the area affected can reduce pain and increase mobility.
It is essential to care for your joints and tendons in order to prevent the development of ganglion cysts. Do not engage in activities that place too much strain on your joints. Stretch before, and after exercising. Protective gear can be worn when you play sports, or engage in repetitive movements. This will help to reduce your risk of getting ganglion cysts.
Ganglion cysts, which are not cancerous lumps that contain a jelly-like liquid, are filled with thickened fluid. These cysts are usually found around the wrist but may also develop on other joints and tendons. Ganglion cysts are not dangerous, but they can be painful and restrict mobility. There are many treatment options available, including NSAIDs and aspiration, ice therapy, surgery, rest and NSAIDs. Many cases can be treated without the need for surgery. Pain and swelling can be reduced with natural remedies like Epsom salt baths and cold compresses.
Ganglion cysts can be treated at home and are fairly common. If the cyst becomes painful, or restricts mobility, you should seek professional help. Ganglion cysts are treatable with proper care and patients can resume their usual activities.