This site is intended for healthcare professionals

Go to /sign-in page

You can view 5 more pages before signing in

Clinical features

Last reviewed dd mmm yyyy. Last edited dd mmm yyyy

Authoring team

Clinical features:

  • usually solitary, round-to-oval, dome-shaped, firm-to-fluctuant papulonodules
  • grooving of the nail may precede the clinical manifestation of the cyst itself by up to 6 months
  • classic clinical presentation is that of a slow-growing, well-localized mass that is most often solitary in nature
  • lesion typically appears as a dome-shaped, oval, or round lesion that occurs predominantly on the dorsal aspect of the distal phalanges
    • cyst may be soft, indurated, or fluctuant in nature
    • cyst is often translucent and smooth and may vary in color from pink to white
    • lesion most often afflicts women, with a 3 to 1 ratio over men.
    • cyst occurs more commonly in middle-aged to elderly patients
    • size may vary from 1-10mm in diameter
    • patient often describes a clear viscous drainage from the affected area if the cyst ruptures
    • mass may expand and contract throughout its course
    • the lesion typically will reform within 2 months after a rupture
    • cysts can be symptomatic, especially when located in areas of pressure
    • symptoms can include burning, itching, or pain on palpation of the lesion
    • patients may relate a history of acute nail changes, which can include ridging or longitudinal depressions in the nail plate
    • on occasion, the cyst may present in a subungual location
  • click here for an example image of a mucoid cyst


  • 1) Blume PA et al. Digital mucoid cyst excision by using the bilobed flap technique and arthroplastic resection. The Journal of Foot and Ankle Surgery (2005);44, 44-48.

Create an account to add page annotations

Annotations allow you to add information to this page that would be handy to have on hand during a consultation. E.g. a website or number. This information will always show when you visit this page.