What is an Arthritis Knee Cyst?

An arthritis

knee cyst

is also called a

Baker’s cyst


or a

popliteal cyst


. A cyst behind the knee is common in people who suffer from joint inflammation diseases or arthritis. People who suffer from osteoarthritis of the knee or rheumatoid arthritis and children who suffer from juvenile arthritis are prone to the development of this cyst.

The Reason for the Formation:

The synovial fluid of the knee joints due to arthritic conditions can sometime leak due to the swelling of the joints. This excess fluid often bulges towards the knee’s popliteal (the back of the knee) leading to the formation of a cyst which we call a

knee cyst

or a Baker’s Cyst.


The cyst formed in the popliteal area does not have associated symptoms to knee pain and neither does the presence of a bulge behind the knee’s back lead to any tightness.

  • Although, the cyst is visible to naked eye and can be clearly noticed especially when a person containing the cyst is in a standing posture. The Baker cyst is soft to touch but is not tender to touch whatsoever.
  • But, if the cyst gets ruptured, it can leak down the leg into the ankle causing it to bulge as well, although there would be no pain involved.
  • Also, the cyst when ruptured, can cause the leg to swell rapidly.


A cyst, as already mentioned is visible to the naked eye. In order to confirm the nature of the cyst, a doctor would use the help of radiology which involves an MRI scan and an ultrasound injection.


Removing the excess fluid from the back of the knee usually resolves the problem. The doctor would also administer cortisone injections just in case to avoid any inflammation and pain.

But, if the

knee cyst

leads to a tear in the cartilage and has caused any other knee problems, an arthroscopic surgery would be essential. This surgery would remove the damaged tissue that led to the formation of the cyst.

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *