Treating a Baker’s Cyst
In many instances, a Baker’s cyst seems to vanish on its own. However, where this does not occur, you may need to seek treatment. In certain situations, the cyst can cause you discomfort and pain if it is big enough. Should this be the case a surgeon will likely suggest a few treatments.
Your surgeon could inject corticosteroid medicine in your body such as cortisone, which can reduce inflammation around the knee. This is a fairly effective way of resolving painful symptoms, although the cyst may return.
Your doctor could remove, or aspirate, the fluid that has amassed in your knees. The fluid is removed with a needle, which is typically placed using medical imaging, such as ultrasound, x-ray or CT scan.
There are several ways in which physical therapy can help treat a Baker’s cyst. Treatments might include:
- Icing the area
- Compression wraps
This would help bring down the swelling and pain in the affected region.
It is important to also maintain motion while the condition is ongoing. This is where exercises that strengthen the knee muscle can be helpful. These would help reduce the symptoms and let the knee function normally later on.
The home and lifestyle remedies
In some cases, your doctor may recommend simply at-home steps that can be used to treat the Baker’s cyst, such as RICE therapy.
Following the principles of RICE
RICE stands for rest, compression, ice, and elevation. You need to rest the leg and ice the knee. You need to use a wrap to compress your knee.
You should keep the leg elevated as and when you can. This needs to be done especially at night. You should also try over the counter medicines that can relieve your pain, such as:
- naproxen sodium
Your Treatment Plan
Your doctor will try to treat the underlying cause of the cyst. However, a particular treatment is not always appropriate for every case. For example, the doctor may find a cartilage tear that is causing synovial fluid to be overproduced in the area. In that case, they may ask you to go for surgery so that the torn cartilage could be repaired. On the other hand, the Baker’s cyst may be due to arthritis. In such situations, if you treat your arthritis the cyst often improves as well. In such cases, you do not need any surgical intervention.