I had a sebaceous cyst on the back, outside part of my calf about six inches lower than my knee. It has been there for five or six years anyway, maybe longer. It never has hurt and other than being ugly, it was not a problem.
Recently I was push starting a motorcycle and as I hopped on the bike (wearing shorts) I bumped that cyst up against the side of the engine, which was very hot at the time. I felt the burn and saw a little red spot at the top of the cyst but just figured that would be a burn or blister for the next few days.
Within a very short time my leg started aching, which I chalked up to the burn, but when I looked at the cyst I could see that it was only about half the size that it used to be and that my leg had an inflamed, red area covering most of the outside part. It seems like the extreme heat must have busted open the cyst. My leg got sore and I have been walking tenderly on it for two days now. It seems to be better when I stay off of it, but I had to get out to take care of some business today and after walking on it for an hour or so, my entire lower leg swelled quite a bit. My ankle had even swelled where it almost looked like a tennis ball down there.
It aches and throbs a bit and because of the swelling. I can't fully extend my knee or bend it fully. There is an extra hard and high swollen place running from the cyst to the back of my knee.
The cyst looks different now. You can see where it used to be and the white part only covers about a third of that now. The top of the white has the red spot I thought was a burn (maybe it is?, it doesn't hurt though). The rest of the area is now pretty bright red. Right now there is some minor inflammation extending about 2.5 to 3 inches around the cyst. That area has been much larger when I'm active. In the morning, there is relatively no inflammation around the cyst and swelling in the calf goes way down if not away during the night. Is it going to take treatment to get better?
This may be a ruptured popliteal cyst. The pain is caused by the swelling and inflammation that came when the cyst ruptured. "A popliteal cyst, also called a Baker's cyst, is a soft, often painless bump that develops on the back of the knee. A cyst is usually nothing more than a bag of fluid. These cysts occur most often when the knee is damaged due to arthritis, gout, injury, or inflammation in the lining of the knee joint. Surgical treatment may be successful when the actual cause of the cyst is addressed. Otherwise, the cyst can come back again
You may need to have this assessed by an orthopedic surgeon. Oral antibiotics and complete assessment of the affected areas may be able to help as the rupture of the cyst may lead to infections. Oral pain killers and injection of corticosteroids in the area may be able to help.
Thank you very much Vanessa for responding to my question! The pain was so bad this morning, and the swelling had not gone down like it had the previous mornings so I made a doctor's appointment.
He gloved up and sliced it open, had his nurse hold my leg while I screamed and yelled, and he squeezed about 4 oz. of black blood, puss, and white gunk out of the area. It felt better immediately with the release of all that pressure!!
He put me on two weeks worth of Keflex and said that when the cyst heals, he would go back and remove it. He got on to me for not having it removed in the previous six years!
I'm still limping around on it a bit, but it feels SO much better right now (about 5 hours after surgery)
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