Symptoms of a ruptured Baker's cyst include sharp pain generalized in the knee area, calf swelling and redness or a feeling of water running down the calf, according to Mayo Clinic. These symptoms occur when a cyst bursts and the synovial fluid inside leaks into the calf. Because these symptoms are similar to those of a blood clot, immediate evaluation of symptoms by a medical professional is required.
Baker's cysts are caused by the buildup of synovial fluid in the leg, notes Mayo Clinic. This fluid lubricates the leg, allowing it to move freely while reducing friction between the parts in the knee. If the knee produces an excess level of synovial fluid, however, a Baker's cyst filled with this fluid can develop at the back of the knee. Many times, a Baker's cyst is caused by arthritis or other types of inflammation that occur in the joints of the knee. It can also result from cartilage tears and other knee injuries.
A Baker's cyst is usually treated with injections of cortisone into the knee joint to relieve pain or draining the fluid from the knee during a knee aspiration procedure, advises Mayo Clinic. Crutches, compression wraps and icing the area can also directly or indirectly reduce swelling and alleviate pain caused by a Baker's cyst.