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Ganglion Cysts


A ganglion cyst is an abnormal buildup of fluid under the skin. They are most common on the wrists, feet, or ankles, but can be found anywhere on the body. The cause is not known. You may have a higher risk for a ganglion cyst if you injure your joint.


Go to hand therapy:

A hand therapist teaches you exercises to help improve movement and strength, and to decrease pain.

Wear a splint as directed:

You may need a splint to support and protect the joint that has the cyst. A splint will limit movement and help your cyst get smaller.

Do not try to pop or break the cyst:

This can cause tissue damage and the cyst may return.

Wound care after aspiration or surgery:

Care for the cyst area as directed. Rest your joint for 48 hours. Place ice on your wound for 15 to 20 minutes every hour or as directed. Use an ice pack, or put crushed ice in a plastic bag. Cover it with a towel. Ice helps prevent tissue damage and decreases swelling and pain.

Follow up with your healthcare provider or orthopedist as directed:

Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

Contact your healthcare provider or orthopedist if:

  • You continue to have pain, even after treatment.
  • Your cyst returns or gets larger.
  • Your limb that has the cyst gets weak, numb, stiff, or unstable.
  • You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.

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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

Learn more about Ganglion Cysts (Aftercare Instructions)

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Further information

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