By Dr Tony Setiobudi BMedSci, MBBS, MRCS, MMed (Ortho), FRCS (Ortho)

Wrist ganglion Wrist

Wrist ganglion cyst is a benign lump at the top of the wrist. It usually arises from the wrist joint or the tendon. This is not a dangerous lump. It is not a tumor. It does not spread. However, you cannot assume all wrist lump to be ganglion cyst. It is best to get it checked by an experienced doctor.

Wrist ganglion cyst usually is not painful and does not give problem other than cosmetic appearance. When it is not disturbing, it does not require any surgical treatment. Sometimes, the cyst can disappear by itself.

Occasionally, the cyst can be painful and restricting the movement of the joint. In this case, it may require treatment. The treatment options are:

  1. Anti-inflammatory medication to reduce the inflammation and pain.
  2. Needle aspiration to remove the fluid in the cyst. This can be done in the clinic. The recurrent rate is high.
  3. Operation to remove the cyst. This is the most permanent solution. Occasionally, the cyst can still come back after surgery. Surgery to remove the cyst can be done as a day surgery procedure with local anesthesia or general anesthesia.


Dr Tony Setiobudi is an Orthopaedic & Spine Surgeon at Mount Elizabeth Hospital (Orchard), Singapore. He treats bone, joint, muscle and ligament problems in adults and children. He has a special interest in nerve compression and spine problems such as back & neck pain, scoliosis, kyphosis, spine tumor & infection, spinal cord injury, osteoporosis fracture, spinal stenosis and slipped disc.