The Operation

A ganglion is a type of liquid-filled structure that most commonly occurs at the wrist. It is most common on the back of the wrist but may occur on the palm-side of the wrist. A ganglion is due to degeneration of fibres in a wrist ligament that allow fluid from the joint to collect causing the cyst-like structure, which is not normally present. This may cause discomfort and aching in the wrist. This may be worse with activity or when doing things that force the wrist back such as press-ups or pushing up out of the bath. In this operation the ganglion is surgically removed through a cut in the skin.

After The Operation

After the operation, there will be a large plaster bandage on your wrist. It is important to move your arm including the shoulder, elbows and fingers after the operation to stop them stiffening. The bandage is removed along with the stitches after about ten days and you will be asked to start massaging the scar with a moisturiser. The stitches may not require removal if they are absorbable.

You may get back to driving after that if you feel safe to do so and can consider going back to work in two weeks. However, people doing heavy manual jobs may need more time off.

Risks Of Surgery

Generally, these procedures are considered to be effective and low risk. However some people may have problems. The commonest of these is discomfort around the wrist, which may last for a couple of months after surgery. Other problems are swelling and stiffness of the hand, which if severe and accompanied by pain, is called “reflex sympathetic dystrophy.” It is rare. Infection is also rare. Occasionally the ganglion returns after a period of time. There will be a visible scar from surgery but this will fade over the course of a year.

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