When the area is numb, the ganglion sac is punctured
with a sterile needle.
The fluid is drawn out of the ganglion
The ganglion collapses.
A bandage and, in some
cases, a splint are used for a few days to limit movement and prevent the
ganglion sac from filling again.
Treating a ganglion by draining the fluid with a needle may not
work because the ganglion sac remains intact and can fill
again, causing the ganglion to return. For this reason, your doctor may puncture the sac with the needle 3 or 4 times so the
sac will collapse completely. Even then, the ganglion is likely to
Infection after draining the ganglion fluid is a
possible complication of this procedure.
Ganglions on the wrist may return in up to 9 out of 10 people using
non-surgical treatment, such as aspiration.1