What is it?

Baker’s cyst, or popliteal cyst, is a fluid filled cyst that develops in the back of the knee. It usually develops in people who suffer from arthritis or cartilage tear of the knee joint, causing the knee to produce fluid. The cysts cause pain, which gets worse when flexing or extending the knee and while being active.

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Synovial cyst of popliteal space.

Additional names

This group contains additional names:
- Baker's cyst

Signs & symptoms

Symptoms include swelling behind the knee, knee pain, stiffness and inability to fully flex the knee.


Diagnosis is based upon findings from medical history and physical examination. Further evaluation may include imaging tests of the knee, to rule out other conditions.


Sometimes, baker’s cyst resolves on their own, but if it is large and causes pain treatment may include steroid injection, fluid drainage and physical therapy.

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

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