Cyst behind Knee
A cyst behind the knee or medically termed as Baker’s Cyst is a sac called bursae that is filled with fluid that causes the formation of a bulge and a tightening feeling behind the knee. The cyst can cause pain which can get worse when the patient will extend or flex the knee or use it in one way or another.
Baker’s cyst is often called as a popliteal cyst and is a result of knee joint problems like a tear in the cartilage or arthritis. The cyst also will cause swelling and make the patient feel very uncomfortable. Other accompanying symptoms include knee stiffness and swelling of the knee that can extend to the legs.
In rare occasions, the cyst can burst and send out synovial fluid into the calf area which leads to experiencing a sharp pain in the affected knee, swelling, redness of the calf, and a feeling that there is fluid running down the calf. When these symptoms are observed, it is best to seek immediate medical evaluation.
Cyst behind Knee Cause
The main cause of Baker’s cyst is the overproduction of the synovial fluid which helps in lubricating the tendons and cartilages in the knee area. There are also other factors that cause the condition including the following.
- Pressure build-up in the knee area which causes the synovial fluid to bulge out at the back of the knee. This can be caused by too much exposure to strenuous activities along with obesity.
- Arthritis of the knee which is commonly experienced by older patients. Rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis are some of the common types that attack the knee area.
- Injury or trauma to the knee area can lead to effusion or fluid build-up which can trigger cyst development.
- Torn cartilage. The menisci cartilages are usually the ones that are affected since these holds the knee joints.
- Viral and bacterial infection can also cause retention of fluid within the area of the knee joint.
- There have been reported cases wherein cysts develop in children without any known cause.
Cyst behind Knee Treatment
- Treatment of the underlying cause can completely cure the cyst. Those that have arthritis should take prescribed medications along with those that have infections. Torn cartilage can be corrected through surgical procedures.
- Patients should temporarily avoid any kind of activity that worsen the condition or add pressure to the knee joint.
- Use of physiotherapy methods like the use of crutches and specialized exercises to maintain strength and mobility and the administration of ice packs on the affected area.
- Cortisone injections
- Draining the fluid by inserting a needle.
- Surgery can be done to remove the cyst completely in severe cases.