Last Modified on Feb 14, 2014
What are Ganglion Cysts?
Ganglion cysts are lumps that form along the joints of wrists and hands, and sometimes on ankles and feet. They are round in shape, filled with thick fluid, and can range from pea-sized to nearly an inch in diameter. Depending on size and location, symptoms of ganglion cysts can be ignored unless painful or swelling in size due to use of the joint or tendon. It's unclear as to why ganglion cysts form, but it's thought they appear when tissue around the join or tendon gets out of place, as the interior of the cyst is filled the jelly-like fluid found inside joints and around tendons.
Often ganglion cysts can dissipate on their own, doctors can drain them with syringes, and rarely is surgical removal the best option. Ganglion cysts most often occur in women between 20 and 30, but risk is increased in people with joint and tendon injuries or arthritis.
Home Remedies for Ganglion Cysts
This Earth Clinic page is for the posting of home and natural cures for ganglion cysts. Our most popular treatments for ganglion cysts are been venom, coconut kefir, and the book method. The book method involves taking a very heavy book and smashing the cyst yourself; feel free to read user testimonials to learn more. Let us know what you try from Earth Clinic to treat your ganglion cysts. If you know of a remedy that's not yet listed here, feel free to share it with us.
|The Book Method||5 YEAS|
[NAY] 05/03/2012: Dorli from Kent, Ct: "My former post that a bee sting directly into the cyst rendered it smoother and half the size was short lived. It came back the same size as before.
I may try several more stings or take the advice of another writer and aspirate it with a sterile 12 gauge needle."Replies
10/29/2012: P92868 from Mesa, Arizona replies: "I had a ganglion cyst... And it dissapeared! ... With the combination of full glass of water to 1/4 teaspoon of Epson Salt! ... It took about 2 plus months and I am very happy! Thank you! ... I was worring with surgery options that I did not want to do!"
12/16/2012: Tonimario from Abuja, Enugu Nigeria replies: "Please did you take the epsom salt and water orally?"
[YEA] 05/01/2012: Dorli from Kent, Ct: "I had a ganglion cyst on my left wrist that started to get larger. It didn't hurt. We keep bees and my husband captures a bee and puts it on my knee to give me a direct sting for my knee problems.
I thought, "why not get a sting directly into the ganglion cyst?" He did and now half the size and very smooth. I'll try another sting and hope it will be gone completely."
[YEA] 02/27/2010: V from Dayton, Oh: "I made my first coconut kefir last week. I took 2 tsp a day and in 1 week my ganglion cyst I had for years is GONE!!!"
EC: Kefir grains are needed to make coconut kefir, but once obtained, we found an easy recipe here: http://www.foodbuzz.com/recipes/1295161-how-to-make-coconut-kefir
09/27/2013: Sndwave from Fort Walton Beach, Fl replies: "And where on the site did you find coconut kefir? There is no search window on it to use."
[YEA] 02/14/2014: Jennifer from Warwickshire: "Dorsal ganglion cyst on wrist: Yes indeed, a pinch of Epsom Salts in water or juice twice a day for around a week reduced the very large, hard ganglion I have had for nearly a year to a small smooth bump which is hardly noticeable. I shall continue and see if there is a total reduction, but already I am surprised and delighted."
[YEA] 09/14/2013: Amanda from England: "I just wanted to let people know that having watched my wrist ganglion grow for over 6 months to the size of a walnut, I found this site and saw several remedies suggested for ganglions. I went for the easiest option - I rubbed Frankincense essential oil on it morrning and night and was gobsmacked when I realised, it wasn't my imagination but that the thing was shrinking. It took 6 weeks in all, and I am now able to practice my yoga again. Thank you all for your amazing input into this site. It is sorely needed."
[YEA] 02/12/2013: Karen from Coeur D'alene, Idaho, Usa: "I had a very painful ganglion cyst on the palm of my hand. Before resorting to surgery, I tried this remedy. I put 2 drops of Frankincense oil on a bandaid and covered the cyst. Every 48 hours I changed the bandage. It stunk, the cat hated me petting her, but it worked. Each bandaid change yielded less pain and a reduced cyst. After approximately 2 weeks, I can't tell it was ever there. I am going to try the same thing on a sebaceous cyst on my head that I have had for years. Makes me wonder if there was a specific reason our saviour was given a gift of frankencense. Also, gives new meaning to "He annointeth my head with oil... " Thank you Yah for providing all that is necessary for our health and healing."
[YEA] 01/01/2013: Ky Mama from Clinton, Ky: "My 16 year old son had a ganglion cyst on his wrist that was painful. He put frankincense essential oil on it (undiluted) and overnight his pain had improved. Because he was no longer bothered by it, he didn't keep at it, so it is still there, but reduced in size. Another time it bothered him again and the same remedy worked for him. Frankincense essential oil is expensive, but useful for many things and worth having a bottle around. And it is cheaper than the doctor for sure!"Replies
01/03/2013: Fora from Calgary, Alberta, Canada replies: "Hi: I just wanted to let you know how I got rid of my ganglion on my wrist. First I had surgery. This grew back. I decided to try strong protolytic enzymes. These enzymes eat dead tissue. I took a handfull 3x per day and it was gone in about 4-5 days (long time ago I cannot remember). This however, taught me a lesson on protolytic enzymes!! Doctor Gonzages is treating cancer with them in NYC!"
[YEA] 06/02/2013: Richard from New York: "Had a ganglion cyst on my knuckle on my thumb for quite a while. It did not hurt but was getting larger.
I massaged it with pressure using my other thumb for about 15 minutes to a half hour when I felt the cyst break. The size was reduced by more than 3/4 but there was still something there. I gave it several days to see if it would go away on its own but there was no change. So I once again massaged the remaining portion with pressure and the remaining portion of the cyst broke and it is gone."
[YEA] 05/20/2013: Smanga from Pretoria, Gauteng, South Africa: "I had a ganglion cyst and I massagd it 4 times an hour until it decreasd in size. Then after I put ice cubes on my wrist to ease the swelling and avoided using my right hand for 2 days, then after 2 days I massaged the last remaining liquid out of it. Then it was gone just in 3 days."
[YEA] 05/08/2010: Swanny from Swansea, West Glamorgan, United Kingdom: "Oil pulling with virgin coconut oil cured my ganglion cyst - I was oil pulling to help my receding gumline...the ganglion cyst (which I have had for many years and was very unsightly) was a complete and unexpected bonus."
EC: More about oil pulling here: http://www.earthclinic.com/Remedies/oil_pulling.html
Pierce With a Needle
[YEA] 03/29/2012: Ursa from Philadelphia, Pa, Usa: "I had a ganglion cyst that refused to yield to smashing (book method), oil pulling, salt soaks, or grape seed supplements. It was hurting my wrist more and more each day and becoming more grotesque to the point I was dreading having to give up long sleeves.
Finally, I ordered an 18 gauge sterile piercing needle. I had to steel my nerve for this but it was actually not very difficult once I set my mind to it. I pierced it from the side to avoid accidentally puncturing anything important in my wrist in case I overshot the cyst. Well, the needle was only about halfway in and already thick liquid began to come out. I removed the needle and "milked" the cyst gently. I was not uncomfortable at all. A lot of thick, gel-like fluid came out. When it was over, my wrist looked normal again and more importantly, felt so much better!
I soaked it in saltwater for about 25 minutes before bandaging it for safety and I'm typing now in complete comfort. I would try the other methods again first if it came back or I got another one but I'm glad I had this option when all else failed."Replies
01/26/2013: Bizzyditchaz from Spokane, Wa replies: "Holy Cow do you have a calm stomach to do that! I have a cyst right now on the base of my thumb about the size of a quarter and seems to be getting larger, AND I am starting to feel it. Sore. Needle aspirations freak me out because I had one in my breast once and it was unreal painful. So yeah, I am pretty gun shy to have it done again."
11/13/2013: Bruce31s from New Orleans, La replies: "Fyi, this is the one of the techniques doctors use to remove/drain the cyst from the affected area. If you don't have the stomach to do it yourself, ask your bdoctor to do it. they have the necessary equpiment to do this."
[YEA] 09/13/2011: Toourlady89 from Hayward, Ca, Usa: "Years ago, my daughter had a ganglion cyst in her right wrist that was in the way and painful when she writes. A surgeon advised surgery to drain it but he said it could recur. Instead, at a friend's suggestion, I started her on grape seed extract (Tru OPCs ) other name is Proanthocyanidin.. Dose suggestion is 1 mg per kg weight once a day before meals or divide the dose and take it twice a day.. The cyst cleared in about 6 weeks.. Or longer, there is no definite time... Another friend had a big one in his right foot and has been unable to wear shoes for months.. It also cleared after taking Tru OPCs and never re appeared.. We used Nature's way Tru Opcs but they are also available at Costco as grape seed extract..."Replies
09/14/2011: Bucci from Ithaca, Ny, Usa replies: "Hi, just wanted to share that I had big ganglion cysts on wrist and it went down the day after going back on my heparin shots. Meaning I think the reason I got it in first place was thick blood but not sure. Do you know what the cause of your cyst was? And if it took 6 weeks for the grapeseed to work, are you sure it was that?"
09/14/2011: Debbie from Melbourne, Australia replies: "Cayenne pepper is excellent for thinning the blood. You can add some boiling water to it to make a tea or just add it to your foods."
04/08/2012: Pg from Toronto, Ontario: "Hello there, I had an Ultrasound done on my ankle a couple months ago and the doc let me know that there is a ganglion cyst in the outer part of my ankle. It's not painful when I walk, but everytime I try to jump (because I play basketball), I can feel something like a little tweak in my ankle and I lose almost all strength from that joint/area.
The doctor has let me know that I have 2 options, needle or surgery to have it removed. I do not want to do the needle and there is a high chance of reoccurence.
I am looking for some natural remedies to help get rid of this cyst. If anybody has any suggestions on what they think might help with my situation, it would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance, everyone! PG"Replies
04/08/2012: Gardener from Small Town, Nh, Usa replies: "Deat Pg in Toronto, food grade diatomaceous earth (DE), also known as shell flour, will effectively help remove your ganglion cyst. DE is high in silica and has some clay in it, which is known to absorb and remove toxins from the body. DEis inexpensive and can be ordered from several companies online. You may find DE at a feed store; just make sure it is labeled ____, which is approved by the FDA (don't know what the equivalent agency in Canada is) as food grade. I believe you'll be surprised how fast your cyst improves and diminishes."
04/17/2012: Pg from Toronto replies: "Hello Gardener, thank you very much for your suggestion. Prior to your post, I had never heard of Diatomaceous Earth before. I have done some research and read many testimonials about how well this products works.
I just picked up some Perma-Guard (food grade DE) from Toronto at Grassroots.
I just had my first tablespoon mixed with water a few minutes ago. I will keep eating this DE and I will reply back to this thread and let you know how well it works for this cyst!
Thanks again for your quick response! :D PG"
12/04/2012: Linda from Willis, Texas replies: "PG from Toronto: How is your cyst now? I have one im my wrist as well...."
Sea Salt, Epsom Salts, Borax
[YEA] 01/07/2010: Bill from San Fernando, Philippines: "Hi Everyone...I had a significant ganglion lump appear on my right wrist joint earlier last year(2009). A ganglion lump is defined as:
"A ganglion is a small, usually hard bump above a tendon or in the capsule that encloses a joint. A ganglion is also called a synovial hernia or synovial cyst."
"Most ganglions develop on the hand or wrist. This condition is common in people who bowl or who play handball, raquetball, squash, or tennis. Runners and athletes who jump, ski, or play contact sports often develop foot ganglions."
I started to take 1/4 tspn sea salt 1/8 tspn Epsom salts in a full glass of water twice a day as well as spraying my body after showering with an 8 oz spray bottle containing water 3 tspns Epsom Salts 1/2 tspn borax and the ganglion lump simply disappeared quickly within a week. I was little amazed, since my ganglion lump had been with me for well over a year.
I also have small calcium bumps or lumps on the back of my neck which also greatly reduced in size because of this protocol. I'm guessing here but I think this was perhaps due to the magnesium (from Epsom Salts) leeching out the calcium and restoring some electrolytic balance in that area of my body."
02/22/2010: Bill from San Fernando, Luzon, Philippines replies: "Just an update on my first post above. I was taking the sea salt and magnesium sulphate as above, but the ganglion only went down so far and then didn't change.
So I reverted to taking just the Magnesium Sulphate (Epsom Salts) crystals orally on its own in a larger dose - 1/4 tspn Epsom Salts in a half glass of water, 3 times a day.
The ganglion on my wrist has disappeared completely and this only took 3 weeks."
02/02/2012: Kantuckee from Green Road, Kentucky, Usa replies: "I couldn't function without Earthclinic!! I developed a cyst a few weeks ago that has been annoying and painfully growing on my wrist. I checked Earhclinic.com and found your comments. I have experience with sea salts, epsom salts and borax. I feel transdermal is the better method of application so I made a small solution of magnesium oil and borax.
I have applied it for 4 days, in the evenings only, and have reduced the cyst by half so far with no pain now. Only the memory keeps me applying it every evening. I am not sure how long to keep using it but since it will not hurt me will continue until I am very sure it is gone.
Thanks so much for the solution!!"
11/13/2013: Bruce31s from New Orleans, La replies: "Transdermal? What's that?"
11/13/2013: Bruce31s from New Orleans, La replies: "What kind of water did you use to apply with dsmo? I have what appears to be a ganglion cyst. first noticed it in May 2013 during lunch. At that time it was at the top of the thumb joint. Noticed it last night that it has expanded, it has expanded past the bottom thumb joint."
The Book Method
[YEA] 04/07/2013: Dave from Fountain Inn, SC: "I had what an orthopedic surgeon described as a ganglion cyst on the outside of my left ankle. It had stayed there for a number of years growing more and more every year until it was bothering me when I walked. The surgeon told me he could lance it but it would grow back. He told me the cause: the foot is like a building, he explained. If a part of it shifts incorrectly then the whole will not drain liquids as it should. As such, the cyst accumulates liquid and continually grows. Well, I went home and thought about that for a while. If my left foot structure had shifted then why wasn't it hurting somehow. So I began pressing the foot, using my thumb to see if some "issue" existed that I knew not of. The cyst was on the outside of the left ankle but I was pressing my forefinger and thumb all around the inside of the top of the foot... Deeply pressing, to find something wrong. After all, if the foot structure was "out" as the surgeon had told me then something would be "disjointed. " It took me only five minutes to find the spot. How could I have not felt that pain before is beyond me. Between the big toe and the second toe, about an inch up the top of the foot...as I pressed deeply with my finger, a terrific pain and soreness was instantly evident. "What is THAT?" I thought. I gently used pressure... five seconds and letting up (with my thumb and forefinger). After twenty minutes I let the foot rest.
The next morning to my amazement the size of the cyst had diminished by about one third in size! That night I repeated the pressure method where the pain was centered... Between the big tow and second toe... but up the foot...deep into the foot. The next day the cyst was half the size as before I'd started. The third day, an amazing thing happened. As I did my usual "press" with my foot crossed over my right knee, and using my right hand with thumb below the big toe and forefinger pressing on top between the big toe and second toe, suddenly, the structure "clicked" as if clicking back in place! I gently massaged the left foot. No pain or soreness at all. The next morning the entire cyst was GONE. From then on, I occasionally repeat the technique...pushing between the toes and gently separating the big toe deep and high in the foot from the second toe. And on occasion, it will "click" back. That was eight years ago. The cyst has never come back. I just wonder if many of the cysts that arise are structurally instigated cysts that can be "manipulated" such that the structure, whether it be hand or foot etc using a method I describe herein might reset the structure allowing proper drainage. Also, it could be that some "cysts" described in this section are not caused by the "structure" problem the orthopedic surgeon explained to me.
Once I had a growth on my hand coming out of the inside of the palm, between the little finger and fourth finger. That one, unlike the one on my foot was hard.The ganglion cyst on my foot was soft. The one on my hand I do not believe could be described as a ganglion cyst. I used DMSO, the solvent and anti oxidant, applied with a white paper towel and left as a poultice for thirty minutes. Two applications were sufficient to make the cyst disappear. Dilute the DMSO with an equal amount of purified water or the DMSO will "pucker" the skin. The pucker will go away' in a few hours but it will scare you. To make sure the cyst was not caused by an infection I'd use as the "dilution" not just any water, but colloidal silver. The silver will kill any infection. That hard cyst on my hand came back in the exact place six months later and the second time I did use the DMSO plus the colloidal silver as a "dilution" and again used a white pater towel with about twenty drops of DMSO and twenty drops of colloidal silver. That was ten years ago. That hand cyst has never returned. The DMSO is good for stiff hands (arthritic hands and fingers, by the way). Just a cap full rubbed into the hands like a lotion making sure joints of both hands are covered... all joints and poof...hands as good as new. Every year or so I feel that stiffness and I pull out my DMSO."Replies
04/10/2013: Bev from Long Beach, Ca replies: "I have a new lump in the palm of my left hand. It's about the size of a pea. Could you tell me where my pressure point would be to see if I can get rid of this thing? No idea what it is. Thank you."
09/14/2013: Dave from Fountain Inn, Sc replies: "Bev, please forgive me for taking so long to respond but I missed your question in the "recent posts" which I sometimes can't get to on a regular basis.
On finding the pressure point, use your thumb between the fingers on palm side and work up them quarter inch at a time. Also try this: sitting on your couch take your hand and flare out the thumb using different angles to press against the cushion... you are stretching the muscles to see if anthing moves.
You are looking for a sore point; I call it the "ouch" point. That is what you massage and in time the lossened up structure may shift. If that is the source of the problem the cyst will recede by the next day.
Keep repeating until the cyst is gone and the "structure" is back to normal. I've noticed hand issues are common with folks who do a lot of gardening/ boxing on a heavy bag without wraps/ tennis/ golf etc. I think I read there are over fifty bones in the hand so anything out can cause a problem. Remember what I said about the cyst I had between my fingers: Consider using DMSO as an anti inflamatory if the "hand/ pressure point" method doesn't work."