Arthroscopy is a minimally invasive surgical procedure allowing thorough visualisation of a joint for diagnosis or minor surgery. Arthroscopy is a term that comes from two Greek words, arthro-, meaning joint, and -skopein, meaning to examine.
The benefits of arthroscopy involve smaller incisions, faster healing and recovery, and less scarring. Arthroscopic surgical procedures are often performed through Day Surgery allowing the patient to return home on the same day.
Why is Arthroscopy necessary?
Diagnosing disease and injuries in a joint begins with a thorough medical history, physical examination, and usually X-rays. Additional tests such as an MRI, or CT scan may be needed. By inserting an arthroscope in a joint, a final, more accurate, diagnosis is made than through "open" surgery or from X-ray studies.
What joints can be viewed with an Arthroscope?
- hip, and
These are the most frequently examined joints with an arthroscope. As advances are made in electronic technology and new techniques developed, other joints may be treated in the future.
What conditions are treated by Arthroscopy?
Several disorders are treated with a combination of arthroscopic and standard surgery. Some problems associated with arthritis can also be treated.
Disease and injuries can damage bones, cartilage, ligaments, muscles, and tendons. Some of the most frequent conditions found during arthroscopic examinations of joints are:
- Synovitis - Inflamed lining (synovium) in knee, shoulder, elbow, wrist, or ankle.
- Injury - Acute and chronic.
- Shoulder - Rotator cuff tendon tears, impingement syndrome, and recurrent dislocations.
- Knee - Meniscal (cartilage) tears, chondromalacia (wearing or injury of cartilage cushion), and anterior cruciate ligament tears with instability.
- Wrist - Carpal tunnel syndrome.
- Loose bodies of bone and/or cartilage - Knee, shoulder, elbow, ankle, or wrist.