Baker’s or popliteal cyst

Posted by ellerbracke @ellerbracke, Oct 11, 2019

Is it possible to develop a baker’s cyst overnight, for nor obvious reason? I woke up this morning with a small lump in back of my knee where there usually is a depression between the tendons. I does not really hurt very much, but it makes it harder to straighten the knee. I did not do anything unusual or especially strenuous yesterday, nor did I hurt or twist my knee in any way.

Hi @ellerbracke. I'd like to invite @candrgonzalez, @johnbishop, and @talan who have discussed dealing with a baker's cyst on Connect. @ellerbracke, are you still noticing the lump on the back of your knee? Has the pain changed at all?

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Hi @ellerbracke, I have no experience with a Baker's cyst other than learning what it was when another member posted a question on one. Mayo Clinic has some information on their website here:

Baker's cyst
https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/bakers-cyst/symptoms-causes/syc-20369950

@elizamail mentioned having a Baker's cyst behind her knee. She may be able to provide some more information for you.

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Hi @ellerbracke, I have very large Baker's cyst (both knees). Mine came out gradually. My legs were feeling weird for about 3 weeks (pain, stiffness and difficulty with balance). I was seeing my PCP, Pain Management and Rheumatology and they didn't know what was happening to my legs until my husband saw the swelling behind my knees. I was prescribed Prednisone for a few days, rest, ice and elevation. Now they are talking about possibly draining them and injecting steroids. I have an appointment tomorrow and hopefully the Dr. can help me because this is very painful.

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Hi there @ellerbracke, For quite a while, I dubbed myself Queen of the Baker’s cyst. I have had them behind both knees. After the drainage and treatment of the left one, it was determined that even though the meninges tear was longer on the right knee, the left knee was more painful and the Baker’s cyst on the left had returned. And so I signed up for a TKR on the left knee. Lo and behold, the Baker’s cyst disappeared never to be seen again. The one on the other knee, the right one, has become a nuisance. What now?

An extra three or four deep breaths while in “legs up the wall” pose helps to keep the Baker’s cyst diminished. An ice pack once in a while helps if it becomes painful. The objective is to control the size, thereby controlling the pain. I will gladly accompany you on this journey. My family thinks that not standing in the kitchen cooking also helps. Please don’t tell them any different. Be safe and protected. Chris

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I just joined this group; looking forward to reading the discussions. I had a TKR a year and a half ago. Two months after the surgery, I developed a Baker's Cyst. It was drained twice, with no results. Seven months after surgery, I had arthroscopic surgery to try to drain it, and manipulate scar tissue. It seemed to work, but two weeks later, back to swelling behind the knee. I now have only a 90 degree bend, it's always swollen, and sometimes quite painful. I had a TKR on the other knee a year before the second knee, and it only has a 90 degree bend, too. Very frustrating. I had extreme pain with both knees, and couldn't/didn't do the therapy that is required. I'm wondering if scar tissue can still be broken up, if I get really aggressive with massage, exercise, etc.? Would appreciate any comments. Thanks!

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@terryescobar

I just joined this group; looking forward to reading the discussions. I had a TKR a year and a half ago. Two months after the surgery, I developed a Baker's Cyst. It was drained twice, with no results. Seven months after surgery, I had arthroscopic surgery to try to drain it, and manipulate scar tissue. It seemed to work, but two weeks later, back to swelling behind the knee. I now have only a 90 degree bend, it's always swollen, and sometimes quite painful. I had a TKR on the other knee a year before the second knee, and it only has a 90 degree bend, too. Very frustrating. I had extreme pain with both knees, and couldn't/didn't do the therapy that is required. I'm wondering if scar tissue can still be broken up, if I get really aggressive with massage, exercise, etc.? Would appreciate any comments. Thanks!

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Hi @terryescobar and welcome to the Joint Replacements group on Mayo Clinic Connect. I moved your message to this existing discussion about Baker's or popliteal cyst so that you can meet others who share this experience like @ellerbracke @candrgonzalez @artscaping @charlena and @IndianaScott.

While we wait for others to chime in, you might be interested in this article:
– 5 Exercises That Can Help You Manage a Baker’s Cyst: https://www.healthline.com/health/bakers-cyst-exercises#1

And also in this discussion:
– Scar tissue after knee replacement https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/scar-tissue-after-knee-replacement/

Terry, you mention that you "couldn't/didn't do the therapy that is required." Was it the pain or fear of pain that held you back? Are you generally an active person or was/is getting active hard to do?

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@terryescobar

I just joined this group; looking forward to reading the discussions. I had a TKR a year and a half ago. Two months after the surgery, I developed a Baker's Cyst. It was drained twice, with no results. Seven months after surgery, I had arthroscopic surgery to try to drain it, and manipulate scar tissue. It seemed to work, but two weeks later, back to swelling behind the knee. I now have only a 90 degree bend, it's always swollen, and sometimes quite painful. I had a TKR on the other knee a year before the second knee, and it only has a 90 degree bend, too. Very frustrating. I had extreme pain with both knees, and couldn't/didn't do the therapy that is required. I'm wondering if scar tissue can still be broken up, if I get really aggressive with massage, exercise, etc.? Would appreciate any comments. Thanks!

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Welcome! @terryescobar. I received a tag from Colleen about your Baker's Cyst. My first one was drained and returned. When I had a TKR the following year on that knee, the Baker's Cyst disappeared and never returned. That's good because it was troublesome.

This is an easy procedure with little discomfort. The problem is, as long as there is an injury to the knee, it will keep coming back to help out.

My right knee now has an "inherited" Baker's Cyst and it keeps getting bigger. However, the knee, complete with a major meningus tear is not painful. My MFR therapist is concerned that everything is out of alignment in the fascial world and will become painful. So, I am thinking about what to do myself. Drainage or removal.

May you be safe, protected, and free.
Chris

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Right now I'm working on it with a very competent chiropractor. It was caused by a really jarring fall I experienced. Hoping it will settle down and fade away.

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@colleenyoung

Hi @terryescobar and welcome to the Joint Replacements group on Mayo Clinic Connect. I moved your message to this existing discussion about Baker's or popliteal cyst so that you can meet others who share this experience like @ellerbracke @candrgonzalez @artscaping @charlena and @IndianaScott.

While we wait for others to chime in, you might be interested in this article:
– 5 Exercises That Can Help You Manage a Baker’s Cyst: https://www.healthline.com/health/bakers-cyst-exercises#1

And also in this discussion:
– Scar tissue after knee replacement https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/scar-tissue-after-knee-replacement/

Terry, you mention that you "couldn't/didn't do the therapy that is required." Was it the pain or fear of pain that held you back? Are you generally an active person or was/is getting active hard to do?

Jump to this post

Thanks for the move, and the info! I would have to say it was both the pain AND the fear of pain. I've always been a very active person – loved walking, gardening, landscaping, etc. And I always considered myself a tough ol' broad (I'm 67). I expected knee replacement to be a breeze, like everyone else's! I spent 5 days in the hospital, a pitiful mess because it hurt so much, and I was on so much pain meds that I remember very little of those 5 days. It's been a journey, for sure. I'm about to resign myself to it being as good as it's going to get, which makes me sad. I'll read the articles, and I thank you!

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