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Digital Mucous Cyst Excision

This outpatient procedure is used to remove a mucous cyst, a small, fluid-filled sac that forms on back of the finger near the base of the fingernail.

Overview

This outpatient procedure is used to remove a mucous cyst, a small, fluid-filled sac that forms on back of the finger near the base of the fingernail.

Preparation

This procedure is performed in the operating room under sterile conditions. Anesthesia is administered, a touniquet is applied, and the handis cleansed and sanitized. The patient is positioned with the back of the hand clearly visible to the surgeon.

Accessing the Cyst

A small incision is made over the DIP joint - the joint nearest the fingernail. This allows access to the cyst and the joint. The shape of the incision will vary depending on the size and location of the cystand the surgeon's preference. If the cyst involves a portion of the cuticle, a skin flap may be created to remove the cyst and recreate the cuticle.

Excising the Cyst

The surgeon carefully retracts the extensor tendon and then removes the cyst and the dorsal joint capsule. Because mucous cysts are usually caused by joint arthritis, the surgeon examines the joint and removes any bone spurs that may have formed. This reduces joint pain and decreases the chance of recurrence.

End of Procedure

The incision is closed with sutures. The finger is bandaged and splinted. The patient is given pain relievers and is able to leave the hospital following the procedure.

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