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Ganglion Cyst

A ganglion cyst is a fluid-filled bump, usually located around a joint or tendon sheath in the hand, wrist or foot. They are the most common soft tissue mass of the hand and wrist, affecting 55 out of every 100,000 people each year.

Ganglion cysts are three times more common in women than men, and can arise at any age. There does not appear to be any relationship between ganglion cysts and dominant hand or occupation.

Our Approach to Ganglion Cyst

Ganglion cysts do not need treatment unless they're causing symptoms, and many go away on their own. If a cyst becomes infected or painful, or starts to interfere with movement, a doctor can drain the fluid inside or remove the cyst surgically.

Should you need treatment, our team includes highly trained surgeons who specialize in the hand and wrist, where most ganglion cysts occur. We also have surgeons who specialize in the foot and ankle, other common sites for these cysts.

Awards & recognition

  • usnews-neurology

    Among the top hospitals in the nation

  • usnews-orthopedics

    One of the nation's best for orthopedic care

UCSF Health medical specialists have reviewed this information. It is for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace the advice of your doctor or other health care provider. We encourage you to discuss any questions or concerns you may have with your provider.