Arthroscopy of the knee is the surgical procedure that is performed using special instruments, to which a camera is attached, in order to visualize the interior aspects of the knee. In some cases, certain injuries of the joint can be repaired as well. The advantages of arthroscopic surgery in comparison to conventional surgery, are that it is far less invasive, involves less tissue damage during the course of the operation, allows better visualization of the area of interest, and of course, results in a shorter recovery time, which is particularly important to professional athletes.
Diagnoses of joint injuries are based on a thorough anamnesis (patient history), clinical examination, and usually radiographic imaging. In some situations, additional measures such as MRIs or CT scans may be necessary.
A diagnosis established during an arthroscopy, may be more accurate than a diagnosis established during open surgery of following radiographic imaging.
Arthroscopy can be used to examine virtually all joints of the body, the most common being; the knee, shoulder, wrist, and ankle. It can also be used to examine the hip, elbow, and smaller joints. Arthroscopy is also used in the diagnosis and therapy of inflamed joints (synovitis), as well as acute and chronic injuries of the joints.
Arthroscopy of the knee
Arthroscopy of the knee can be used to diagnose and treat the following conditions:
- Torn or ruptured ligaments, meniscus, or tendons
- Inflammation of the synovium of the knee joint (synovitis)
- Joint fractures
- Loose bodies of the joints composed of cartilage and bone
- Damage of joint cartilage