If you've suffered a knee injury, you might be experiencing a lot of pain during day to day activities. You'll want to seek treatment as soon as possible. For some injuries, your surgeon might recomment a knee surgery called arthroscopy.
What is Arthroscopy?
Arthroscopy is a surgical procedure which uses flexible tubing to carry a small lighted camera and lens to the surgical area. This process allows for minimally invasive surgery, since the surgeon can see inside a joint or area with the camera instead of through larger incisions.
Unlike open site surgery, arthroscopic surgery results in very small incisions. This procedure can reduce recovery times and lower the risk of complications. In fact, this type of surgery is typically done on an outpatient basis and may not require an overnight stay at all. Patients can recover comfortably at home. Professional athletes and weekend warriors alike prefer arthroscopy for these reasons, while surgeons appreciate the lower risk for patients and the flexibility to treat multiple conditions.
When Do Surgeons Recommend Knee Arthroscopy?
There are many treatment options for knee injuries. When a patient’s knee requires surgery, arthroscopic surgery is a top option. Injuries which can be treated with arthroscopy include:
- Meniscus tears: In this type of knee injury, a cartilage in the knee tears. When it cannot heal on its own, a torn meniscus may require knee surgery. Arthroscopy is a popular choice because it allows the patient to resume activity in a few weeks with rest and rehabilitation.
- Synovium swelling: The folded synovium membrane creates fluids, which lubricate and protect joints. When the membrane swells in the knee, it can become very painful for the patient and inhibit regular activities. The knee can also become uncomfortably swollen. Arthroscopy can reduce pain and swelling very quickly.
- Removal of fragments: When tissues in the knee tear or when the knee suffers any sort of inflammation or injury, fragments of tissue, bone and cartilage can become dislodged. This displacement often causes swelling, severe pain and mobility issues. Arthroscopy allows an experienced surgeon to remove any dislodged matter in the knee.
- Baker’s cysts: These bumps filled with fluid can form behind the knee as a result of tumors, blood clots, injury, inflammation or other causes. This condition is also referred to as popliteal cysts. Surgeons often use arthroscopic surgery to investigate the cause of the cyst before recommending further treatment.
- Torn ACL: The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) may require surgery if it tears significantly as a result of sustained or heavy sports play. In this case, arthroscopic surgery offers the fastest recovery time. During this knee surgery, the ACL is repaired with a donated tendon.
How to Get Started
If you think you may be a candidate for arthroscopic surgery, you will first want to get a proper diagnosis and speak to a sports medicine orthopedic specialist about treatment options. If you have an injured knee, book an appointment with Dr. Mufaddal Gombera today. Dr. Gombera is a board-certified, fellowship trained orthopedic surgeon with years of experience. Our clinic in Houston focuses on sports injury and offers arthroscopic surgery as well as additional leading procedures for sports injury patients.