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Christian Krauss

popliteal cyst / baker's cyst

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Christian Krauss

hey guys, ive been having some issues with my left (dominant) leg for about 2-3 years now. yes, ive already been to the doc and had mri/mrt, but nobody  seemed to find my actual problem yet. i will try to tell you my little story here... hopefully someone could help me out.

ive been very active all my life, doing comp. gymnastics (4-7 times a week) till the age of 13, then started playing basketball till the age of 23 (3-5 times a week). the first time i realised there was something wrong with my knee was (age 22-23), when i came up from a basic deep squat position at home (no weight involved), when i heard this really weird grinding noise all the way up to about 90°, then it stopped until my legs were completly straight again. to this day i have this noise - only when pressing up from a deep squat and the sound stops at around 90°, no pain involved. obviosly feels uncomfortable but its not like i have to stop the movement. so i went to the doc and got checked, he basicly told me its arthritis because of all the jumping i have done all my live and i just have to keep strengthening my leg. started doing strength excercises, squats, extensions, curls, stiff legged stuff, lunges etc. my legs definetly got stronger but the weird grinding noise + just feeling my knee doesnt work as good as my healthy one left me thinking again. went to a different doc and got my first mri/mrt done cause i wanted someone to look at the whole joint + tendons/ligaments... turns out 'nothing' was wrong with my knee joint, no ripped ligaments or tendons etc. doc said he doesent know either, keep strengthening, so i did. 

about 6 months ago i wanted to stand up out of a chair and couldnt straighten my leg. didnt know what was wrong and got another mri/mrt. now i got a pretty annoying bakers/popliteal cyst in the back of my knee. this is always a secondary effect, so there HAS to be something worng with my knee joint itself to over-produce joint fluid that is now in the back of my knee and idk if its around my kneecab too, but my kneecab has been swollen everytime the cyst was 'active'. 

the cyst went away for some time after i tried to stretch in a frontsplit position with the bad knee in front, something poped and was kinda scared.. but the next day the cyst was gone, yes! well... cyst came back even bigger about 1 month later and has not been getting better any. once i bend my knee to 90° im not able to straighten it again until i massage the back of my knee while straightening. i dont want to get the thing removed because it can always come back. i have to solve the primary problem so the cyst will go away itself, but i dont know how? stretching always feels good except for kneeling positions like the first few ankle stretches in the MS Series. strengthening is kinda hard cause once i bend it, i cant straighten it again, remember? so this knee is giving me and my training a really hard time, i hope to find someone who might have some ideas how to solve or even wirth with this.. or might even have/had to same problem. let me know if i have any info missing.

sorry for my bad english and thanks in advance! chris

 

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Mark Collins

Have you seen a physio?

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Christian Krauss

Yes i have. I had 6x manual therapy, but didnt help. i have trouble finding a 'good' therapist. im thinking about going to an osteopath or something. but im just really sick of not finding any answers to this stupid knee! 

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Suzanna McGee

I've had baker's cyst(s) before. I started to play tennis quite intensely at age 37. Playing 7 days a week, working with coaches, competing. I didn't know better then… I developed imbalances that caused me some minor issues (and a big wake up call). My baker's cyst where due to imbalances in the muscles leading to/supporting the knee and thus creating too many not too good forces there. I got rid of my imbalances eventually (that was the great wake up call) and since then have been always precise about my training. My gluteus medius completed disconnected and was not engaging where it was supposed to. The IT band got overused. My gracilis muscles got really tight, pulling on my knee. That one was hard to stretch, I had to do a lot of myofascial release. Hamstrings were too weak, quads too tight… I do not know your issues, but the answer is really simple. The baker's cyst is just the symptom. You have some serious muscular imbalances that you have to fix. The best thing would be to find a good physio or therapist and work diligently on fixing it.

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Petra Dvorak

Hi Christian

As you mentioned yourself, the Baker zyst is not a diagnosis itself but a symptom (the joint is producing too much fluid). How long ago was your MRI and how old are you now?

The whole story to me sounds as if there is something "swimming" around in your knee, might be little loose particles from your meniscus, which might not show up in an MRI.

If you have really tried all conservative measures to strengh and balance your leg, then I would recommend seeing a good Orthopedist and maybe getting an arthroscopy for direct insight and lavage/shaving

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Christian Krauss

Thanks for sharing your stories and giving some advices!

I will try to find a good therapist first, to fix my imbalances. If it doesnt seem to get better i will have to see the doc again. 

What do you think about starting the SLS progessions again? 

 

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Mark Collins

If you have has treatment to the knee and there is no change then I would recommend finding a therapist who assesses the whole body to work out why you have the problem. The next best areas to check are the hips and feet.

If you have then tried everything conservatively with no improvement I would have another review with an orthopaedic surgeon. Sometimes the MRI will miss pathology that is the cause. 

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Christian Krauss

Thanks guys!

 

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Nick Goddard

In February this year my knee also developed a bakers cyst inside the fat pad. 

It meant that fully straightening my left knee was painful. 

At the beginning of October this month I had a steroid injection to remove it. I could literally see the fluid being drained out on the scan.


So far 20 days later the pain has now gone when I straighten the left knee. However the knee still feels loose like there’s something not quite right when walking. As @Christian Krauss has mentioned, they often come back if things are imbalanced. And I’m terrified of that happening.

Can anyone recommend a general test to locate imbalances?

Single legged exercises must be useful for balancIng out both legs 

Also, can anyone relate to the lose feeling in the knee from gymnastic bodies (currently doing the stretch series and foundations).

thanks in advance,

nick

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