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Mucous Cysts

Mucous cysts appear as a bump on the back of the finger, near the base of the fingernail. They are not usually, painful but can cause some issues with both the fingernail and the underlying joint.

What are mucous cysts?

Similar toganglion cyststhat affect the wrist, mucous cysts appear because of an accumulation of a type of fluid (called synovial fluid) that is there to protect and cushion the joints and tendons in your fingers and hand. The fluid is usually sealed in place by a membrane; on occasions it can emerge through a perforation and form a bump under the skin. The body finds it difficult to disperse this fluid since it contains special proteins that thicken it, leaving a jelly-like consistency that forms into a cyst.

Where do mucous cysts appear?

Mucous cysts appear on the end joint in your finger, next to the base of the fingernail. The presence of a cyst can cause a deep groove to form in the fingernail. On rare occasions, mucous cysts can become infected and lead to a joint infection. Although most cases of mucous cysts are not harmful, they should be checked as they can lead to complications or be related to an underlying problem

What causes mucous cysts?

Mucous cysts are not necessarily caused by a particular event or condition; they can affect all kinds of people at different times. However, it is possible for them to be caused by arthritis, or by small bumps on the bone surface (bone spurs) in the affected finger joint.

How can mucous cysts be treated?

Treatment for mucous cysts varies based on your exact symptoms. In some cases, surgery is the best option, which involves carefully removing the cyst and nearby arthritic bone under a local anaesthetic.

Some people attempt to treat the cyst themselves by puncturing it with a needle. This is definitely not recommended as it can allow bacteria to enter, sometimes leading to a serious infection in the joint.The right treatment for you can be decided upon once we have examined the cyst to ensure a full understanding of the problem.