Knee Arthroscopy

Knee arthroscopy is a minimally invasive surgical procedure performed on the knee joint to diagnose and treat a variety of knee conditions. It involves the use of a small, pencil-sized instrument called an arthroscope, which has a camera attached to it. The arthroscope is inserted into the knee joint through small incisions, allowing the surgeon to visualize the inside of the knee on a monitor.

During knee arthroscopy, the surgeon can examine the structures within the knee, such as the ligaments, cartilage, tendons, and menisci, to identify any abnormalities or damage. The procedure can help diagnose conditions such as torn meniscus, ligament injuries (such as ACL or MCL tears), cartilage damage, loose bodies, and inflammation.

If a problem is identified during the diagnostic phase, the surgeon can perform various therapeutic procedures using specialized instruments inserted through additional small incisions. These procedures may include:

  1. Meniscus repair: If a torn meniscus is identified, the surgeon may use sutures or other techniques to repair the damaged meniscus tissue.
  2. Meniscectomy: If the torn meniscus cannot be repaired, the surgeon may remove the damaged portion of the meniscus.
  3. Ligament reconstruction: In cases of ligament tears, such as the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), the surgeon may use a graft (often from the patient's own tissue or a donor) to reconstruct the torn ligament.
  4. Meniscus Tears: The meniscus is a C-shaped cartilage in the knee joint. Tears in the meniscus can cause pain, swelling, and limited range of motion. During arthroscopy, the surgeon can trim or repair the torn meniscus.
  5. Cartilage repair: Techniques such as microfracture, mosaicplasty, or cartilage grafting may be used to treat damaged cartilage by promoting the growth of new cartilage tissue.
  6. Synovectomy: If there is excessive inflammation or the presence of abnormal synovial tissue, a synovectomy may be performed to remove the inflamed tissue.

Knee arthroscopy is usually performed under general or regional anesthesia, and it is considered less invasive compared to traditional open knee surgery. It typically results in less pain, faster recovery, and smaller scars. The procedure is often performed on an outpatient basis, allowing patients to return home on the same day, although the exact recovery time can vary depending on the specific procedure performed and individual factors

As with any surgical procedure, knee arthroscopy does carry some risks, including infection, bleeding, blood clots, damage to surrounding structures, and complications related to anesthesia. However, these risks are generally low.

It's important to consult with an orthopedic surgeon to determine if knee arthroscopy is the appropriate treatment option for your specific knee condition. They can evaluate your symptoms, medical history, and imaging studies to determine the best course of action for your knee health.


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