For diagnosing and treating problems in the knee joint, knee arthroscopy is recommended. It’s a surgical procedure where a very small cut is done for inserting a minute camera- known as an arthroscope- inside your knee. The camera helps to see the inner part of the joint on a large screen. The professionals can then determine the problem concerning the knee and if needed, rectify the issue by the use of small gadgets in the arthroscope.
Arthroscopy can diagnose various knee-related issues, such as ripped-up meniscus or a deranged patella (kneecap). The ligaments of the joint can also be corrected by arthroscopy. With a minimum risk involved in the procedure and a good outcome, the procedure is the best for most patients. The recovery time and prognosis depend largely on the gravity of the knee problem and the intricacy of the procedure.
Knee Arthroscopy procedure
An anesthetic may be administered to you before the procedure. It can either be
- local (numbs your knee only)
- regional (numbs you from the waist down)
- general (puts you completely to sleep)
If you are on local or regional anesthetic, then you may be able to watch the procedure on a monitor.
At the start, a few small cuts will be done in your knee. After that, your knee will be expanded by pumping sterile saline water into it making it easier for the surgeon to view inside the knee joint.
The arthroscope is then inserted through one of the cuts and the camera attached allows the expert to view around inside. The images are visible on the monitor placed in the surgery room.
After locating the specific problem in the knee joint, particular tools are then inserted via cuts to resolve the matter. After the procedure is over, the saline water is drained out from the knee joint and incisions are secured by stitches.
Recovery Process After a Knee Arthroscopy
The surgery is minimally invasive needing less than an hour or so based on the type of procedure. Most often you are supposed to return back home on the same day for recuperating. A dressing and ice pack are required to be used on the knee. The ice pack helps to relieve pain as well as inflammation.
While recuperating at home a person is needed to cater to your needs at least for one day. The leg should be put in an elevated posture and dressing needs to be changed too. The duration and the time will be explained to you by the expert for doing these processes. After a few days of the surgery, you are supposed to meet your surgeon for a follow-up checkup.
Some exercise regimes will be advised by the expert to be carried out at home to help the knee to come back to normal or a physiotherapist may be needed for the same. These procedures are required to gain full mobility of the knee and also to make the muscle strong. If followed properly all the steps the outcome of the process is brilliant.