Arthroscopic resection of dorsal wrist ganglion

Mihir R Patel, Ushma K Butala, Vikram D Chauhan, Nirlepsinh S Thakor


Background: The management of dorsal wrist ganglion ranges from benign neglect to surgical excision. The purpose of this study was to study the results of arthroscopic resection of dorsal wrist ganglion.

Methods: Twenty one patients who had undergone arthroscopic dorsal wrist ganglion excision and a minimum of 3 months follow up were included. The preoperative complaint of cosmesis, pain, and duration of swelling, wrist range of motion and size of the ganglion were noted. The duration the patient took to return to a painless wrist with full range of motion was noted. Patient satisfaction with respect to cosmesis and function was noted.

Results: The mean age was 23.3 years (range: 13 to 35 years). Pre-operative wrist pain was present in 17 patients and cosmesis was a complaint in 18 patients. 5 patients had a pre-operative restricted range of motion. The mean duration and size of the ganglion was 2.6 months (range: 2 to 4 months) and1.8cm (range: 1 to 3 cm) respectively. The mean duration of follow up was 14.6 months (range: 3 to 24 months). Arthroscopically, dorsal synovitis was present in 10 patients, triangular-fibro-cartilage-complex (TFCC) tear in 2 patients and chondral damage in 1 patient. The ganglion stalk was visualized in 14 patients. Complete painless wrist range of motion was obtained by 20 patients by 3 weeks post-operative.  One patient had a recurrence. All the remaining patients were satisfied cosmetically and functionally with the results.

Conclusions: Arthroscopic resection is an effective treatment modality for symptomatic dorsal wrist ganglion with good functional and cosmetic results.


Arthroscopy, Dorsal wrist ganglion, Resection

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