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A ganglion is a small sac, or cyst, filled with a clear fluid that is like jelly. A ganglion may look like a bump on the hand or wrist. It also can appear on your feet, ankles, knees, or shoulders. It is not cancer. A ganglion can grow out of the protective area, or capsule, around a joint. It also can grow on a tendon sheath, which covers the rope-like tendons that connect muscle to bone. A ganglion may hurt or cause numbness if it presses on a nerve.
Many ganglions do not need treatment, and they often go away on their own. But if a ganglion hurts, becomes larger, causes numbness, or limits your activity, your doctor may want to drain it with a needle and syringe or remove it with minor surgery.
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
Call your doctor or nurse call line now or seek immediate medical care if:
Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse call line if:
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Current as of: July 1, 2021
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine & E. Gregory Thompson MD - Internal Medicine & Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine
Care instructions adapted under license by your healthcare professional. If you have questions about a medical condition or this instruction, always ask your healthcare professional. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information.
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