• Knee Arthroscopy

    Knee Arthroscopy is a common surgical procedure performed using an arthroscope, a viewing instrument, to look into the knee joint to diagnose or treat a knee problem. It is a relatively safe procedure and a majority of the patient’s discharge from the hospital on the same day of surgery.

  • Arthroscopic ACL Reconstruction

    Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction is surgery to reconstruct the torn ligament of the knee with a tissue graft. The procedure is performed under general anesthesia. Your surgeon will make two small incisions around your knee. An arthroscope, small video camera, is inserted through one incision to see the inside of the knee joint.

  • Arthroscopic Treatment of
    Patella Instability

    Patellar (knee cap) instability results from one or more dislocations or partial dislocations (subluxations). Patella is the small piece of bone in front of the knee that slides up and down the femoral groove (groove in the femur bone) during bending and stretching movements.

  • Arthroscopic Cartilage &
    Meniscus Repair

    Meniscus is the C-shaped two pieces of cartilage located between thighbone and shin bone that act as shock absorbers and cushion the joints. Meniscal tear may be developed by people of all ages and is more common in individuals who play contact sports.

Knee Arthroscopy

Knee Arthroscopy

Introduction

Knee Arthroscopy is a common surgical procedure performed using an arthroscope, a viewing instrument, to look into the knee joint to diagnose or treat a knee problem. It is a relatively safe procedure and a majority of the patient’s discharge from the hospital on the same day of surgery.

Indications for Knee Arthroscopy

The knee joint is vulnerable to a variety of injuries. The most common knee problems where knee arthroscopy may be recommended for diagnosis and treatment are:

  • Torn meniscus
  • Torn or damaged cruciate ligament
  • Torn pieces of articular cartilage
  • Inflamed synovial tissue
  • Misalignment of patella
  • Baker’s cyst: a fluid filled cyst that develops at the back of the knee due to the accumulation of synovial fluid. It commonly occurs with knee conditions such as meniscal tear, knee arthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Certain fractures of the knee bones

Procedure

Knee arthroscopy is performed under local, spinal, or general anesthesia. Your anesthesiologist will decide the best method for you depending on your age and health condition.

  • The surgeon makes, two or three small incisions around the knee.
  • Next, a sterile saline solution is injected into the knee to push apart the various internal structures. This provides a clear view and more room for the surgeon to work.
  • An arthroscope, a narrow tube with a tiny video camera on the end, is inserted through one of the incisions to view the knee joint. The structures inside the knee are visible to the surgeon on a video monitor in the operating room.
  • The surgeon first examines the structures inside the knee joint to assess the cause of the problem.
  • Once a diagnosis is made, surgical instruments such as scissors, motorized shavers, or lasers are inserted through another small incision, and the repair is performed based on the diagnosis.

The repair procedure may include any of the following:

  • Removal or repair of a torn meniscus
  • Reconstruction or repair of a torn cruciate ligament
  • Removal of small torn pieces of articular cartilage
  • Removal of loose fragments of bones
  • Removal of inflamed synovial tissue
  • Removal of baker’s cyst
  • Realignment of the patella
  • Making small holes or microfractures near the damaged cartilage to stimulate cartilage growth
  • After the repair, the knee joint is carefully examined for bleeding or any other damage.
  • The saline is then drained from the knee joint.
  • Finally, the incisions are closed with sutures or steri-strips, and the knee is covered with a sterile dressing.

After the Surgery

Most patients are discharged the same day after knee arthroscopy. Recovery after the surgery depends on the type of repair procedure performed. Recovery from simple procedures is often fast. However, recovery from complicated procedures takes a little longer. Recovery from knee arthroscopy is much faster than that from an open knee surgery.

Pain medicines are prescribed to manage pain. Crutches or a knee brace may be recommended for several weeks. A rehabilitation program may also be advised for a successful recovery. Therapeutic exercises aim to restore motion and strengthen the muscles of the leg and knee.

Risks and Complications

Knee arthroscopy is a safe procedure and complications are very rare. Complications specific to knee arthroscopy include bleeding into the knee joint, infection, knee stiffness, blood clots or continuing knee problems.

Other Related Links

  •  American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
  • International Society for Hip Arthroscopy
  • RYC Orthopaedics
  • American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine
  • The Arthroscopy Association of North America