Ganglion Cyst Surgery


Ganglion Cyst Surgery is the removal of a noncancerous fluid-filled lump or mass that grows in the hand or wrist.

What is it?

A Ganglion Cyst is a mass that is noncancerous and appears in the hand or wrist.  The cyst might resolve on it’s own, or continue to grow which may require surgery to remove.  Ganglion cysts commonly affect people who have repeated stress on their hands or wrists.  Surgery is a treatment for reoccurring cysts or cysts that are painful and interfere with daily activities that have not been resolved with non-surgical methods of treatment.

What should I do to prepare?

Preparing for any surgery can be stressful.  It is best to understand and talk with your doctor about what will happen during the surgery and what to expect after it is complete.  Having a family member or close friend with you the day of surgery can help alleviate some stress.  Scans and preoperative testing will be conducted to determine the best approach to remove the cyst.  A patient should not eat or drink after the midnight before surgery.  Rest and immobilization may be necessary post-surgery to help in the healing process.  This may require time off from work and other physical activities.

What happens during the process?

The surgery aims to remove the ganglion cyst by cutting it at its root.  The origin of the cyst may be tendon sheaths or part of the joint capsule.  This process is called excision.  A small cut in the hand or wrist will give the surgeon complete visibility of the cyst.  The surgeon will close up the incision with stitches and surgical tape after the cyst is removed.

What are the risks and possible complications?

Any surgery involving bones, muscles, or tendons will pose a risk for re-injury or injury to another part of the surrounding area.   Infections, bleeding, and numbness or tingling are possible with this surgery.   Weakness and loss of function are also a possibility with Ganglion Cyst Surgery.  There is also the chance that there will be damage to blood vessels and nerves within the hand and wrist.  There is the chance that further surgery may need to be done later down the road to remove a reoccurring cyst.


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