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Recovering From a Ganglion Cyst Removal

Are you planning on having a ganglion cyst removal procedure? Here’s what to expect from the recovery period, and how you can promote healing for the best results.

Ganglion cysts are lumps that commonly occur in the hands and wrists, adjacent to tendons or joins. In many cases, they do not cause any harm or discomfort.

A ganglion cyst removal may be recommended to:

  • Eliminate any muscle weakness or tingling
  • Enhance joint movement
  • Reduce any pain or discomfort
  • Improve the appearance of your hands

Ganglion Cyst Removals in Kelowna

At our Kelowna private hospital, our team of board-certified and highly qualified surgeons offer a wide range of treatments, including ganglion cyst removals, as well as orthopedic, plastic, and urology, surgery, to meet all your needs and help you feel well again.

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What to Expect After a Ganglion Cyst Removal

When performed by a board-certified surgeon, a ganglion cyst removal is a relatively straightforward and simple procedure that is done on an outpatient basis. If you have had local anesthetic, you can leave soon afterwards. However, if your surgeon has recommended general anesthetic, then you will have to wait for a few hours until the anesthesia has worn off.

Before You Leave the Hospital

Typically, before you leave the hospital, you will be given some painkillers. There is normally very little pain after the surgery, but if you have discomfort, these are available to keep you more comfortable. 

Before you leave, your doctor will most likely:

  • Check that your wound is comfortable and the bandage is secure.
  • Check there is no bleeding or swelling.
  • Give you a follow-up appointment time for the removal of your stitches
  • Ensure that you have a friend or family member to drive you home
  • Give you painkillers to take home.
  • Give you a work note or certificate, if required.

After You Leave the Hospital

The recovery after a ganglion cyst removal is relatively easy, but it’s important to know what to expect, so you can ensure the safest and fastest healing.

Here are some things you may want to keep in mind: 

  • If the cyst was removed from your hand or wrist, you may be required to wear a sling for the first few days. This will reduce swelling and discomfort, and protect your arm from accidental knocks.
  • Try to rest as much as you can, and don’t be shy to ask your family members or friends for help around the house. During this time, you may find it difficult to perform tasks that require two hands.
  • Try not to get your wound wet until after the stitches and dressing has been removed. This typically happens 10 days after your procedure.
  • After your stitches are removed, you should be able to use your hand as normal, but continue to keep the area clean to avoid infection.
  • If your pain is worsening, or you feel unwell, don’t hesitate to contact your surgeon.

Returning to Work After a Ganglion Cyst Removal

The experience of returning to work after having a ganglion cyst removed varies from patient to patient and depends highly on how much you use your hands for your job. The time away may vary from a few days to six weeks.


Complications of a Ganglion Cyst Removal

Because having a ganglion cyst removal is a minor procedure, complications are rare and seldom.

However, you should be aware that:

  • If you have the operation under general anesthetic, there’s a very small risk of complications to your heart and lungs. Pre-assessment is very important to ensure your risk is as low as possible.
  • The procedure can sometimes leave a scar that is thick and red. For some patients, the skin around the scar can remain numb after the operation.
  • It’s likely you’ll experience some bruising around the area, but this should resolve quickly. You may also experience some stiffness, swelling, or pain afterwards.
  • There is always a chance that the ganglion cyst can return after surgery. It can be removed again, with a good chance of success the second time around.


Call Today

To find out more about the costs and benefits of a ganglion cyst removal, and how our team can help restore the function and aesthetics to your hand, contact our Kelowna private hospital at 250-868-9799 or book a consultation.

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