Having a Baker’s Cyst usually means that there is an underlying injury or irritation to the knee that has caused inflammation in the knee. When we get inflammation in our knees, it will find any open area to go, if it goes to the back of our and fills that fluid-filled sac then we call it a Baker’s Cyst.
What Is a Baker’s Cyst?
A Baker’s Cyst, or its technical name a popliteal/synovial cyst, is when the fluid-filled sac that sits at the back of our knees becomes inflamed and swollen. This can lead to knee pain and feeling like you cannot fully bend or straighten your knee.
Having a Baker’s Cyst usually means that there is an underlying injury or irritation to the knee that has caused inflammation in the knee. When we get inflammation in our knees, it will find any open area to go, if it goes to the back of our and fills that fluid-filled sac then we call it a Baker’s Cyst. A common cause of Baker’s Cyst is a flare of knee osteoarthritis.
Is Physiotherapy Good for Baker’s Cyst?
Yes, physiotherapy is a great way to conservatively treat a Baker’s Cyst. Strategies that your physiotherapist may use to treat Baker’s Cyst are compression, activity modifications, gentle range of motion, acupuncture, heat and/or ice, soft tissue massage, and exercise.
Beyond Physiotherapy, other options for treating a Baker’s Cyst that your family doctor can assist you with consist of pain medication such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID), steroid injections, or surgical interventions. These are typically considered when pain and function are not improving with conservative treatment.
What Exercises Prevent Baker’s Cyst?
There is no one exercise that is the best at preventing a Baker’s cyst. Managing activity levels and general strengthening of your knee can be helpful to prevent a flare-up of a Baker’s Cyst. We want to challenge the body so that it can adapt, but not push it too much to the point of aggravation. Your physiotherapist can work with you to find the right level of challenge for you. It is also important to monitor the activities that you participate in. If you plan on starting something new, ensure you ease into it. Our body can adapt but does not do too much, too soon.
Is Walking OK With a Baker’s Cyst?
Walking is a great way to manage a Baker’s cyst. We want to make sure it is not aggravated during or after walking. This is why it is important to manage the volume, frequency, and intensity of your walks to make sure we challenge you within reason. Additionally, we can also utilize a knee compression sleeve to help add comfort to your walking.
What Aggravates Baker’s Cyst?
Stressing the knee at end range bending and straightening can potentially aggravate the knee. Additionally, doing too much activity, too soon can also aggravate a Baker’s cyst. It is important to keep in mind that there are many factors that may play into our experience of pain and swelling, such as sleep, nutrition, stress, etc.
Having trouble bending or straightening your knee? Talk to our physiotherapists today! Our multidisciplinary team can also help you with many health conditions including but not limited to chronic pain, knee joint pain, chronic conditions and knee injuries.