Conditions + Treatments

Arachnoid Cysts in Children

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Contact the Department of Neurosurgery

What are arachnoid cysts?

Arachnoid cysts are sacs filled with spinal fluid that can grow in between the brain or spinal cord and the arachnoid membrane that covers them. Most of these cysts are found on the brain; spinal cord cysts are much more rare.

There are two types of arachnoid cysts:

  • Primary arachnoid cysts are cysts that a child is born with. They are the most common type.
  • Secondary arachnoid cysts can develop after a head injury or brain surgery. They are less common. 

Care for arachnoid cysts

Most arachnoid cysts cause no problems or symptoms and don’t need any treatment. If the cysts do cause symptoms, they may need surgery.

Our specialists at Boston Children's Hospital Department of Neurosurgery can assess whether or not your child's arachnoid cysts need treatment. If your child does need surgery, our surgeons use minimally invasive techniques whenever possible, for a faster recovery and minimal scarring.

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