synovial cyst

The hand is constantly sought, all our daily activities are accomplished through our hands. Our hand is our connection with the external world, the tool indispensable to our maintenance and in many it is our livelihood.

The frequency and intensity with which hands are used can affect them. Some disorders may manifest as tingling, numbness, fracture, sprain or even a synovial cyst.

What is a synovial cyst?

A cyst in general is a pouch attached to an organic tissue or organ. This bag may contain a gas, a liquid or even a semi-solid or even solid texture. The synovial cyst, as its name indicates, appears at the level of the synovial membranes.

The synovial membranes serve to line the moving joints with their gelatinous liquid which forms a lubricating film. When there is a herniation of the wrist joint this membrane becomes a pocket that extends outward from the joint by creating a ball.

Triggers of the cyst:

Usually, the cyst appears spontaneously with no particular cause and gradually increases in volume over a period of several months. The patient only realizes this after a trauma or a violent effort. The aesthetic or painful side motivates people with this cyst to consult.

Characteristics of synovial cyst and its types:

This cyst has several characteristics:

  • It is a bemnous swelling.
  • It is supple and painless but unsightly.
  • Its size varies from a few millimeters to a few centimeters.
  • This cyst may manifest itself progressively or completely abruptly.
  • It can disappear on its own.
  • It has several forms.

There are 2 types of synovial wrist cysts:

Synovial palmar cyst: it is the cyst that develops in front of the wrist, above the folds of flexion of the wrist.
Synovial dorsal cyst: it is the cyst that appears behind the wrist, between the extensor tendons of the wrist and the fingers.
People exposed to synovial cyst
The cyst can affect all age groups, but most cases are particularly affected by a population of young people between the ages of 20 and 30 years. It affects women as much as men. It does not exclude children aged over 4 and the elderly (70 years).

Treatments for synovial cyst

There are different treatments, although the majority of the time these cysts are very small in size and not annoying. However, cysts that may compromise daily activities or become painful may require intervention. The risk of recurrence is reported to varying percentages according to the type of treatment: Here are some treatments recommended in the case of the synovial cyst:

Pressure: If the cyst is not thick, you can apply pressure with the thumb or a coin on the cyst to burst and release fluid, this method only brings about 30% of permanent cure and exposes To a recurrence of 50%.

Aspiration or puncture: a more effective technique against cysts with thick walls intended to empty the cyst of its viscous substance and then to inject into the cyst a corticoid that will proceed to the destruction of the cyst. It is carried out in consultation and thus avoids surgery. The recidivism rate is 20 to 30%.

The surgical procedure: Surgical removal under arthroscopy of this cyst and under local anesthesia. In general, small cysts are also extracted, which are often the source of recurrence. The procedure does not last long (15 minutes) and the convalescence time is not long either. One can make use of our hand a few hours after. It is advisable not to force on the wrist during the weeks following the intervention.

Other causes of wrist swelling:

A swollen wrist can be caused by arthritis, hygroma, Quervain tendonitis as well as sprains, lipomas, tensions and bone fractures


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