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Arthroscopy. 1996 Dec;12(6):739-45.

Arthroscopic decompression of a ganglion cyst causing suprascapular nerve compression.

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Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, USA.


Ganglion cysts causing suprascapular nerve compression are an uncommon cause of suprascapular nerve compression. The advent of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and its application in patients with shoulder pain has improved the ability to diagnose cystic lesions causing extrinsic compression of the suprascapular nerve. Traditionally, treatment of suprascapular nerve compression by a ganglion cyst has required open cyst excision through either a deltoid and infraspinatus muscle takedown or a muscle splitting approach. We present three cases of suprascapular nerve compression by a ganglion cyst in which the cyst was decompressed arthroscopically. In each case the patient's symptoms resolved after arthroscopic cyst decompression, and a postoperative MRI does not demonstrate reaccumulation of the cyst fluid. Arthroscopic ganglion cyst decompression is a well-tolerated approach to this problem that avoids the morbidity of an open surgical procedure. The absence of recurrent cyst formation combined with resolution of the symptoms attests to the success of this method.

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