Arachnoid Cysts | Diagnosis & Treatment

How are arachnoid cysts diagnosed?

Arachnoid cysts are usually diagnosed with a complete exam and imaging tests to see the cysts. These tests may include:

What are the treatment options for arachnoid cysts?

Many children with arachnoid cysts don't need any treatment. In most cases, treatment is only recommend if the cysts are causing symptoms. If your child needs treatment there are a few options:

  • Surgery to remove the cyst or to open the cyst so it can be reabsorbed into the spinal fluid.
  • Placing a shunt (a thin tube shaped like a straw) into the cyst to drain the fluid into another part of the body, such as the stomach. 

Expert care for arachnoid cysts

Our Neurosurgery team at Boston Children's Hospital uses minimally invasive surgery (smaller and more precise tools) to treat arachnoid cysts. This type of surgery means smaller incisions, quicker recovery and fewer side effects for our patients.