What is ganglion cyst aspiration?

Ganglion cysts are cosmetically unacceptable to a significant number of patients and may cause pain, tingling, and muscle weakness; it can also hinder joint movement. If your ganglion cyst is causing severe pain or is limiting daily activities it maybe time to have a doctor drain the synovial fluid from it.

This procedure is called ganglion cyst aspiration.

The procedure starts with the area around the ganglion cyst being numbed.  The cyst is then punctured with a needle so that the fluid can be removed.

The failure rate for ganglion cyst aspiration is greater than 20 percent. The reason it fails is because the “ganglion cyst root” or connection to the joint or tendon sheath has not been removed. A ganglion cyst will grow back if the root is not removed. If this happens, your doctor may need to perform another aspiration to drain the cyst.

Aspiration is most frequently recommended for ganglion cysts located on the top of the wrist.

Ganglion Cyst Aspiration
Ganglion cyst aspiration fails more than 20% of the time

Surgical excision is an often a better treatment option as the failure rate is less compared to aspiration. The ganglion cyst aspiration treatment should be offered to patients not willing for surgery but they should be properly counseled about the chances of failure.