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Baker's Cyst

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Updated May 21, 2014

Baker's cyst - fluid collection

A Baker's Cyst, or popliteal cyst, is a collection of fluid in the back of the knee joint.

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Definition: A Baker's Cyst, or popliteal cyst, is a collection of fluid in the back of the knee joint. A Baker's cyst is usually a symptom of another problem, or it may be an incidental finding with no significant meaning.

Can a Baker's Cyst spread?
No! A Baker's Cyst is not a growth. It is not a tumor or cancer, and cannot spread to other parts of the body. A Baker's Cyst is a symptom, much like fluid within the knee, except that the fluid in a Baker's Cyst has collected in the back of the knee.

Why did I get a Baker's Cyst?
Most often in adults the Baker's cyst is found in conditions where there is chronic swelling or fluid accumulation in the knee joint. These conditions include knee arthritis, meniscus injuries, and ligamentous injuries.

What is the treatment of a Baker's Cyst?
Treatment of a Baker's cyst that is the result of a problem within the knee consists of treating the underlying problem. These treatments may include anti-inflammatory medications and cortisone injections. In some patients, placing a needle directly into the Baker's Cyst to drain the fluid can be helpful. Unfortunately, in some patients, the fluid within the Baker's Cyst can be jelly-like and difficult to remove through a needle.

If conservative treatments fail to correct the cyst, an operation can be performed. The operation may be done to correct the cause of the Baker's Cyst, or to excise the cyst itself.

Also Known As: Popliteal Cyst
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