What is it?

Perineural cysts, also known as Tarlov cysts, are fluid-filled sacs that develop around the nerve roots in the spine, typically in the sacral area. They are more common in women. Perineural cysts seldom cause any symptoms, and most people who have them won’t know it. For other people, it may cause pain radiating to the legs and buttocks. The reason for the appearance is not known, but things making it grow include falls, injuries, and heavy exertion.

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Additional names

This group contains additional names:
- Tarlov cyst

Signs & symptoms

Usually there are no symptoms, but if the cysts grows it may compress the nerves and cause pain in the lower back, the legs, and buttocks. There could also be numbness in the same areas and muscle weakness of the legs and feet.


Diagnosis is based upon findings from medical history and physical examination. Further evaluation may include imaging tests.


Treatment is needed only in the cases the cysts get big and cause pain. Treatment may include drainage of the cysts, but it gets filled up again. Surgery is the permanent solution but it is rarely performed.

☝️ This is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult with your physician before making any medical decision.

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