The name cyst may conjure up images of puss filled bubbles on the skin, leaving one looking like a half human, half lizard-type creature.  They actually sound a lot worse than reality. While mucus cysts are fairly common, they’re not usually hazardous to a person’s health.  However, they can be annoying and uncomfortable. So, what are these fluid filled bubbles and how are they eliminated?

Varieties Of Mucous Cysts

There are a couple of forms of a mucous cysts, also known as mucocele.  Digital Myxoid cysts are benign ganglion cysts commonly found on the fingers and toes.  These cysts are not contagious nor are they hereditary, although some believe genetics maybe involved.  The skin colored, pinkish, yet translucent cysts, are often found connected between the joint and the nail. This type of cyst is more common in people in the age range of sixty plus, and quantities can be one or more.
Oral Mucous cyst is a common, fluid-filled cyst that is found on the mouth or lip.  The cyst occurs when a gland in the mouth is plugged by mucus and is usually harmless, painless, and disappears over time.  Many people confuse a mouth cyst to be cancer, which is typically different in appearance.  Mouth cancer is more of a mouth lesion than a cyst, and it is usually accompanied by lumps or swelling elsewhere in the mouth and throat.  If you are concerned about mouth cancer, it’s essential to visit a health care practitioner.  A cyst on the gum is called an epulis, and a cyst found on the floor of the mouth is known as a ranula. Both are benign.  You should visit the emergency room if a cyst becomes large enough to impair your speech or breathing.

What Causes A Mucous Cyst?

There is not one definite answer on the cause of these cysts, but several suggestions, include:

  • Osteoarthritis (cartilage breakdown surrounding joints)
  • Fluid from the finger or toe joints can escape, causing the skin to swell and
  • Piercings
  • Abnormal teeth growth (common in younger people)
  • Lip sucking/biting
  • Trauma (an object hitting the mouth)
  • Sucking or biting the inner cheek


How To Treat A Mucous Cyst?

When you leave them alone, often oral mucous cysts usually disappear after time. There are, however, several options to help aid the elimination of Digital Myxoid cysts. These all need to be done by a health care practitioner:

  • Cyst drainage, using a sterile needle.
  • Cryosurgery is the freezing of a cyst using liquid nitrogen.
  • Cutting out the cyst.
  • Locating the leak of fluid from the joint and stopping the leak. This is only recommended if the cyst is located near a joint (like a finger joint) and it has become problematic to use.
  • Scraping off the cyst
  • Laser the cyst off
  • Steroid injections

Cysts may also reoccur even after drainage or surgery.  There are a number of suggestions on the web for home remedies. But like any health issue, you should consult a professional before undertaking any home treatments.  The skin is delicate, and self draining the cyst may cause scarring or even infection. Due to these mucous cysts being harmless, there is not a great deal of research devoted to them.  The ailment may leave patients feeling helpless so discussing treatment options with a professional may offer alternative solutions.
To find out more on mucous cysts, visit
Science Direct
International Journal of Dentistry

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