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The Basics: What Is a Ganglion Cyst?

Author Zizzur Staff. Published on June 29, 2011 - 5:11 am (2271 views — 376 words)

What is ganglion? In human anatomy, ganglion refers to the body tissues when accumulated in the joints and tendons in the hands, wrists, and feet which is one of the main causes for mild pain sensations in the area.

What is ganglion cyst? Generally, ganglion cyst is a fluid-filled inflammation that is sited near the tendons or joints in the hands, wrists, and feet. The cyst has a spongy liquid sac. The inside structure is a jelly-like, thick, sticky, and clear fluid. Actually, the real cause of ganglion cysts is unknown. These may be painless and benign; usually, it will go away without any medical interventions.

Women are prone of having ganglion cysts than men. Also, these are most commonly seen in individuals who have medical problems in their tendons and joints, who have chronic disease like osteoarthritis, and who have repetitive movements in their hands, wrists, and feet.

However, these cysts can disappear and reappear any time. It might as well differ in texture and size. Some cases of ganglion cysts could cause numbness and pain. As the cyst grows in size, there is a tendency that it presses the nerves, thus causing the pain and numbness.

For the diagnosis of ganglion cysts, physical examination is usually enough. Moreover, there are a few cases which the physician might order imaging tests such as ultrasound, x-rays, and magnetic resonance to acquire more information on the characteristics of the ganglion cyst. Aspiration technique is considered to be the best and the simplest way to diagnose and treat ganglion cysts, since the physician will just make used of a syringe to aspirate the fluid inside the cyst, then it will be brought to the laboratory for further evaluation.

Furthermore, the syringe with an aspirating needle is used to take out the fluid from the cyst and is used also for surgical removal of the cyst. After the aspiration procedure, the doctor may inject a steroid for inflammation. Take note, it is no guarantee that the ganglion cysts will permanently disappear after the procedure.

Since there is an idiopathic cause for ganglion cysts, there were no suggested preventive measures, but it is very important to have adequate rest and exercise for good blood circulation to obtain a healthy life.