Cysts are relatively common and can occur almost anywhere on the body. But one of the places people might not really think about getting cysts is on their feet. Searching for “cyst on foot” online will show you that you’re definitely not alone if you have this issue. The more you learn about cysts on your feet and ankles, where they come from, and how they’re treated, the more knowledgeable you can be for when you may need to see a foot doctor for help.
Here’s what to consider:
What Types of Cysts Can Form on the Feet?
Even though there are hundreds of different types of cysts, and they can grow nearly anywhere on the body, the ones that are most commonly seen on the feet include:
These are benign, fluid-filled growths that are attached to tendons, or to tissues that surround the foot joint. The cyst is much like a balloon on a stick and generally moves freely under the skin. It may cause a dull pain if it’s pressing against nerves, or it could cause a tingling sensation. These kinds of cysts are also common on the wrists, but ankles are the second most common location. If the cyst is on the foot itself, it can make wearing shoes uncomfortable until it’s treated.
While most cysts don’t hurt, these can become painful. They are fluctuant nodules under the skin’s surface. These are some of the most common types of cysts, too, so if you end up with a cyst on your foot, it’s likely it could be because of one of these. They can be stable, or they can grow larger over time. They aren’t the same as sebaceous cysts, but the terms are frequently used in an interchangeable way. These kinds of cysts generally need to be removed, to reduce the discomfort they cause.
These small, fluid-filled sacs occur on the top of the foot. They can also occur over a joint or tendon. They are soft initially, but over time they can become firmer. Like ganglion cysts, they can get larger, and can cause a problem with wearing shoes. They generally aren’t as painful as inclusion cysts, though, making them less likely to need removal, especially if they aren’t bothering anything.
These are masses of fibrous tissue that develop in the arch of the foot. While they’re benign, they can also be painful. They’re a bit different from other kinds of cysts, since they aren’t typically a sac or space filled with anything. Because of the fibrous nature of the tissue, it may need to be removed surgically. This kind of issue can’t be handled like the typical cyst and may require a podiatrist to remedy the issue.
Why Do These Cysts Form?
According to Medical News Today, “doctors are unsure of the exact underlying causes, but these cysts tend to form in areas of trauma, possibly due to a single event or repeated injuries.” What we do know is fluid cushions and lubricates joints and tendons when they move. But that fluid can sometimes leak out, and it really doesn’t have anywhere to go. If it isn’t reabsorbed by the body, it may form a cyst. The exact cause for why fluid may leak from the intended area and why the body may not reabsorb it is where things get a little unknown.
How to Prevent Cysts From Forming
Because the underlying causes of cysts on feet and ankles are somewhat uncertain, prevention techniques might not be entirely successful. However, they can help reduce the chances of a cyst occurring on the foot, and make it less likely that you’ll have a problem in the future with cysts on your feet. Consider:
- Wearing comfortable shoes.
- Practicing proper foot hygiene.
- Taking care of damaged feet.
- Proper management of illnesses that could put your feet at greater risk, such as diabetes, long-term alcohol abuse, and chronic liver disease.
While there’s no guarantee that these techniques will keep your feet cyst-free, they are still good ways to help reduce your chances of cysts and to keep your feet in good condition overall.
Need Help With a Cyst on Your Foot?
Ready to seek treatment for cysts on feet and ankles? Put your best foot forward by learning more about treatment for cysts. You can also give us a call to make an appointment today. Whether you have a painful cyst or it’s just an annoyance, we can make it easier for you to get the treatment you need. Reach out to us today, and get started on your journey to better, healthier feet!
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