A Baker's cyst, also known as a popliteal cyst, is a pocket of
joint fluid that forms a lump behind the knee. Often a Baker's cyst is
painless, but occasionally this pocket of fluid can tear open and drain into
the tissues of the lower leg, causing pain and swelling.
Swelling behind the knee that may increase when
a person stands.
Discomfort behind the knee and into the upper
calf, especially when the knee is completely bent or straight.
When swelling and pain increase, the best approach is to avoid
activities such as squatting or kneeling. Wrapping the knee may help
reduce swelling. Occasionally, fluid may be drained from the knee, and the
person may be given a steroid injection. In cases of restricted mobility or
persistent pain, surgery to remove the cyst may be recommended.
William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine & Kenneth J. Koval, MD - Orthopedic Surgery, Orthopedic Trauma
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