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What is a Baker’s Cyst?
What is a Baker’s Cyst?

A Baker’s cyst, also known as a Popliteal cyst, is a fluid-filled growth located behind the knee. It is typically caused by arthritis or a knee injury such as a ligament or cartilage tear. These conditions can both cause the knee to produce too much fluid (synovial fluid) resulting in a growth behind the knee.

Not all Baker’s cysts produce symptoms but some common symptoms may include:

  • Swelling behind the knee
  • Lump behind the knee
  • Tightness and stiffness
  • Lack of mobility
  • Pain

It’s important that you see a doctor if you find a lump or swelling behind your knee. Although it’s unlikely, it could be something serious such as a blood clot. If the cyst grows large enough it can cause complications with blood flow to the leg and even causes weakness or numbness. It is rare, but cysts can burst and cause bruising down the leg.

Some Baker’s cysts may go away on their own but for those that persist, your doctor can determine the best treatment for you. Non-surgical treatments are usually successful and may include rest, modified activity, aspiration, (draining the excess fluid) medications, and injections. If non-surgical treatments don’t provide relief, your doctor may recommend a surgical procedure such as arthroscopy or excision of the cyst. Usually treating the underlying condition will provide long-term relief. If you are experiencing the symptoms of a Baker’s cyst, consult your doctor for a clear diagnosis and treatment so you can get back to your normal activities.

NewportCare Medical Group is a comprehensive specialty group located in Newport Beach, California specializing in advanced non-surgical and surgical treatments for a wide range of orthopedic conditions.

  • American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons
  • American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine
  • Arthroscopy Association of North America
  • National Association of Secretaries of State
  • American Podiatric Medical Association