The popliteal cyst

Knee Surg Sports Traumatol Arthrosc. 2006 Jul;14(7):623-8. doi: 10.1007/s00167-005-0028-z. Epub 2005 Dec 14.


A popliteal cyst, originally called Baker's cyst, is a synovial fluid-filled mass located in the popliteal fossa. The most common synovial popliteal cyst is considered to be a distension of the bursa located beneath the medial head of the gastrocnemius muscle. Usually, in an adult patient, an underlying intra-articular disorder is present. In children, the cyst can be isolated and the knee joint normal. The anatomy, etiopathogenesis, clinical presentation, differential diagnosis, imaging and treatment modalities of the popliteal cyst are presented. The authors try to answer some questions dealing with this condition. Is the cyst isolated, can it be treated as such, is its origin always well-defined and does surgical excision provide a permanent cure?

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Diagnostic Imaging
  • Humans
  • Orthopedic Procedures / methods
  • Popliteal Cyst / diagnosis*
  • Popliteal Cyst / etiology
  • Popliteal Cyst / physiopathology
  • Popliteal Cyst / therapy*
  • Practice Patterns, Physicians'
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Terminology as Topic