Small synovial cysts are a common manifestation of juvenile idiopathic arthritis; large brachial cysts, however, are a rare sign of the disease and they must be differentiated from other soft tissue swelling which are not related to articular involvement. We describe the case of three children with juvenile idiopathic arthritis who came to our attention with large synovial cysts. Ultrasonographic examination and MRI were performed in all cases, showing the real nature of the swelling and the connection to the joint. In all cases, swelling reduced and then disappeared with control of disease activity; in two cases, they reappeared in coincidence with a severe relapse of juvenile idiopathic arthritis. Brachial swellings represent a diagnostic challenge because they can be the clinical expression of a variety of diseases. In children with juvenile idiopathic arthritis who present with a sudden swelling of the upper arm, synovial cysts must be considered in the diagnostic workout, because they are a possible rare manifestation of juvenile idiopathic arthritis.
- Brachial cyst
- Juvenile idiopathic arthritis
- Synovial cyst
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