The Anxious Patient’s Guide to Ganglion Cyst Aspiration

Anxious Patient's Guide by Advanced Foot & Ankle Specialists

Ganglion cysts are benign, fluid-filled lumps that appear just below the skin. If you develop one on your foot, your doctor may recommend an aspiration to remove the fluid in the cyst so that it goes down. If your foot doctor in Sugar Land has recommended that you undergo a ganglion cyst aspiration, it’s natural to feel a little anxious. This information will help you feel more confident when you walk into your appointment.

What happens during ganglion cyst aspiration?

During the procedure, your foot doctor will wipe the area with an antiseptic cleanser and then administer a local anesthetic for your comfort. Once the area around the cyst is numb, your foot doctor will use a fine needle to puncture the cyst so that the fluid comes out. The process is very fast and is usually completed within minutes. There is no required recovery time, and you should be able to return to your normal activities right away.

Is it painful?

Your doctor will use a local anesthetic so that you are comfortable during the procedure. You may feel pressure, but you shouldn’t feel pain. In some cases, you may experience some minor swelling or discomfort around the site of the aspiration when the anesthesia wears off. These symptoms should be short-lived and can easily be managed with ice and over-the-counter pain medicines. Most people are in less pain after the procedure, since releasing the fluid eases the pressure within the cyst. If you are concerned about pain, talk to your foot doctor about your worries. In some cases, you could benefit from taking a sedative before the procedure, under the management of your doctor.

Am I a good candidate?

Ganglion cyst aspiration is not right for everyone. If your cyst is small and not causing any symptoms, then your doctor may recommend watchful waiting before trying any treatment. There is also a risk that cysts can grow back after aspiration. If your foot doctor thinks that your cyst won’t be effectively treated by aspiration, he or she may recommend a different treatment plan.

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