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Ganglion Surgery (Ganglion Excision)

At the Advanced Center for Orthopedics and Plastic Surgery, our surgeons specialize in the surgical treatment of wrist ganglions, including Dr. Blotter and Dr. Taylor. The Advanced Center for Orthopedics and Plastic Surgery has been performing orthopedic surgery, for more than three decades.

A ganglion is a cyst (an abnormal fluid-filled cavity) that occurs on the front or back of the hand, near the wrist. A ganglion cyst is sometimes referred to as a “Bible bump,” due to the erroneous theory that it may be treated by hitting it with a large book such as a Bible. This is NOT recommended and can actually be dangerous. Though nobody knows why these cysts arise, they are relatively simple to treat, either through draining (aspiration) or surgery (excision).

In the case of aspiration, the area of the wrist containing the ganglion is numbed and the fluid is then drained from the cyst with a needle. This procedure leaves the outer shell of the cyst intact, which means it may reform later. In the case of excision, the entire cyst and its surrounding tissue is removed under local anesthesia. It should be noted that though the ganglion is completely removed via excision, there is always the possibility that it may grow again.

Both these procedures are typically done on an outpatient basis. However, as with any surgical intervention, the patient may have to undergo a recuperation process that can involve follow-up care and physical therapy, depending on the particular situation.

To learn more about what to expect when you undergo ganglion surgery, please visit our surgery prep and recovery page.

Specialty Reference: 
Hand & Wrist