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Baker's Cyst Treatment Orange County

We Can Help With Your Knee Pain Caused by Cysts

A baker’s cyst, also called a popliteal cyst, is a soft, fluid-filled sack that forms on the back of either knee, or it is sometimes mistaken for a blood clot. Also called a popliteal or synovial cyst, the pain often gets worse when the patient fully flexes or extends the knee, especially while physically active. Baker’s cysts are usually caused by knee problems aggravating the condition further, such as arthritis or a cartilage tear, which spur the knees to produce too much fluid.

Do I Have a Baker’s Cyst?

Symptoms of a Baker’s cyst include:

  • A lump sticking out from the back of the knee that may swell in size
  • Pain and swelling behind the knee(s)
  • Stiffness and difficulty or inability to flex the knee(s)

Baker’s Cyst Diagnosis

An orthopedist is the best physician to treat and diagnose Baker’s cysts. During a physical exam, the doctor will ask for your medical history, including gathering information about previous knee injuries. X-rays may be ordered to determine if the patient has arthritis, which may be the direct cause of the Baker’s cyst. Other imaging studies, such as magnetic resonance imaging scans (MRIs) use magnetic waves to show images of the soft tissue underneath the skin. Finally, an ultrasound test can indicate whether the cyst is solid or filled with fluid, and if there are other underlying conditions that require additional treatment.

Treatment of Baker’s Cysts

Often, a Baker’s cyst will go away without medical intervention. However, those who seek medical attention often have larger cysts that cause significant knee pain, requiring more in-depth treatment. Treatment options for Baker’s cyst may include:

  • R.I.C.E.: Rest, ice, compression and elevation of the leg and knee with the Baker’s cyst
  • Avoiding activities that strain the knee and aggravate the cyst
  • Physical therapy
  • Fluid drainage of the cyst

If knee pain persists after attempting these nonsurgical treatments, your knee surgeon may recommend surgery. Your knee surgeon may only need to make a small cut on the knee to resolve the issue. However, surgery will only relieve the problem if the underlying conditions, such as arthritis or a cartilage tear, are treated as well.

Do you have a Baker’s cyst that requires treatment? Contact Hoag Orthopedic Institute today at (855) 999-4641 to set up an appointment.

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