massive fluid build up around knee

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Does anyone have any useful tips when they have had massive fluid build up. i have  fluid around my knee and a big bakers cyst popping out the back of my knee i have had this fluid on and off before years ago but have had it all the time for last year.  i found out i had RA about 4 months ago i have tried  ice, rest, compression sleeve. i have had it drained about 8 times in last two months had the steroid injections they do nothing for me. is there anything else that helps or just need to wait for meds to kick in?

currently on 2000mg sulfasazaline daily (been on for 15 weeks or so dones nothing)

10mg methetrexate once a week (only in second week going up to 15mg this week then up to 20mg in two weeks. i take 10mg folic acid 24 hours before)

just finished 28 days of prediselone (20mg tapering down each week by 5mg)  did nothing at all.

any ideas would be good as it seems  to be getting worse the lump out the back is so big now you can see it sticking out my trousers.

Also people taking methotrexate how long till you noticed it helped.

thanks ben

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6 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi!  I was diagnosed in February of this year. Was in the field for work in April, got stuck in the mud and really wrenched my knee. Swelled up like a cantaloupe. Saw an orthopedic three days later.  He drew off a bunch of fluid and gave me a cortisone shot at the location. Really glad it went!  Drawing the fluid off didn't hurt like I expected. I think the pain from the swelling was worse. 

    I was on prednisone and methotrexate at the time. So the prednisone didn't help the knee much in is instance. 

    Might be worth consulting and ortho to get heir thoughts. 

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    • Posted

      hello thanks for reply. yeah i have had cortisone loads of times it doesnt do anything for me. the prednisone did nothing for me. the last time they drew fluid from knee was two weeks ago they went in from the outside of knee cap and went straight into the bakers cyst from behind got loads out but was back within 2days and all i did for those two days was rest it and i could see it filling back up. so frustrating. have you had results from the methotrexate?
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    • Posted

      As several things haven t worked, they may increase mxt( my dose is 25 mg) it can take up to 12 weeks to work. If that doesn't improve things there are biologics they can try. You don't mention pain but I presume this is causing you a lot of pain.

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  • Posted

    It may also be synovitis or synoviat thickening which I have just had diagnosed on my right elbow, you should be seeing a Doc for a referral to a Radiologist for this, self diagnosis and treatment can lead to a worsening of the condition.   Not all meds work for everyone, MTX didn't work for me, nor did sulfasalazine, hydroxychloroquine, cimzia or actemra.   When you do find one that works the time can also vary from 2 weeks to 3 months, we are all different.

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    • Posted

      Sorry to hear the actemra not making a difference for you. With regard to thickening of synovial fluid in joint that is exactly what RA does- it s not a new diagnosis.
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  • Posted


    guess whoooooo

    Seriously, the fact that you are employed is making recovery more difficult. Rheumatoid is causing the symptom. So until rheumatoid quiets, the symptom will continue.

    Any way you can use crutches and keep that knee elevated and iced at work?

    Whenever my knee has been drained and injected, the surgeon always reminds me to rest the knee for 7-10 days so that the steroid can bring the inflammation down. This serves two, the inflammation is not being further irritated by continual use...two, immediately after steroid injection is the most vulnerable time for permanent joint damage to occur because of over activity.

    Remember that your idea of over activity and your knee's idea of over activity are polar opposites.


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