Ganglia: A Sudden Hand and Wrist Disorder

Posted by projectsadd on June 27th, 2018

There are many well-known health issues that can affect your hands and wrists, including carpal tunnel syndrome, arthritis, and osteoporosis. However, a lesser-known disorder is ganglia. If you develop ganglia, you may need to see an orthopedic hand doctor in Atlanta for diagnosis and effective treatment. Without treatment, you may have discomfort or difficulty performing simple tasks with your hands, from typing to using your phone or even driving.

These are the basic facts that you should know about ganglia and information on determining if you should see a doctor for this sudden disorder of your hands or wrists.

About Ganglia

Ganglia refers to sudden swelling on the joints of the hands and wrists. The tendons between the muscle and bone in your hands and wrists are particularly at risk of developing ganglia. This disorder is characterized by swelling that contains a soft, gelatinous fluid. 

Unfortunately, most doctors today are unsure as to why and how ganglia develop, or why it appears so suddenly. Techniques for prevention are unknown. However, medical experts do know that it occurs in adults of most ages. Women are more likely to develop ganglia.

The most common site where it occurs is in the back of the wrist, at the base of the hand. It can also develop in other joints. When it occurs on the back of your finger, just behind the cuticle, it may be referred to as a mucous cyst.

You're unlikely to notice symptoms of the disorder, but the swelling and unusual texture of ganglia will be noticeable.

Diagnosis and Treatment

If you visit an orthopedist who specializes in hand and wrist disorders, they will evaluate the swelling and should be able to determine fairly quickly if you have ganglia.

Ganglia is usually smooth, rounded, and swollen from directly under the surface of the skin. If necessary, a doctor can withdraw the fluid that is causing this unusual swelling. It's not recommended that you attempt to pop or squish the mass.

Medical History

Although doctors are unsure why ganglia develop, many theorize that a previous injury to the hand or wrist can make you more likely to develop this sudden swelling. It may also be associated with arthritis of the hand.

If you have had ganglia in the past, you may develop it again, but this is uncommon. While you may find ganglia unsightly or even uncomfortable, an orthopedic hand doctor in Atlanta can provide swift and effective treatment.

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Joined: June 26th, 2018
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