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Knot behind the knee after excessive physical exertion. Discomfort and tightness while extending the knee. Need to go to doctor?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 1993
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I am a very avid cyclist......however this past weekend I played 3 games of Basketball. Now have reletively large "knot" right behind my knee. Doscomfort and tightness with leg extension? Should I be seen?
Posted Mon, 21 May 2012 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Answered by Dr. Shainaz Arif Kaware 1 hour later
Thanks for writing in.
Given that you have been very active, the “knot” behind your knee is suggestive of a popliteal cyst or Baker's cyst, although the exact nature of the cyst can be confirmed only after a physical examination and a few investigations.
However, if the lump is slightly above the back of the knee joint, it could be a tear in the muscle as well. This can be easily treated with hot fomentation, diclofenac gel and an analgesic like Tablet Motrin, 1 tablet, taken 4-6 hourly.
A popliteal cyst is usually the result of some problem within the knee joint itself. This condition occurs when too much of synovial fluid is secreted. This mostly occurs due to the torn cartilage in the knee.
We don’t usually treat a popliteal cyst and since you have associated pain, a physical exam and a MRI may be required to confirm the nature of the problem.
I would suggest you see your general physician who would be able to confirm the nature of the lump. A detailed examination and probably an MRI are in order.
Hope this helps.
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