What Is Arthroscopic Surgery?
Arthroscopy is a technique used by orthopedic surgeons to diagnose and treat joint problems in a minimally invasive way. This effective technique allows orthopedists to visualize, diagnose, and treat joint problems of the knee, hip, elbow, shoulder, or ankle. An arthroscopic approach may be necessary to definitively diagnose and treat conditions affecting the bones, cartilage, ligaments, muscles, or tendons.
Arthroscopic surgery may treat and repair:
- Loose bone fragments
- Bone spurs
- Joint lining inflammation
- Torn ligaments
- Torn or damaged cartilage
- Joint scarring
- And more
Some of the most common arthroscopic surgeries include rotator cuff tendon repair, ACL reconstruction and repair, removal of inflammation, carpal tunnel release surgery, and others.
How Does Arthroscopy Compare to Open Surgery?
Once conservative treatments for joint conditions have been exhausted, your orthopedic surgeon may recommend joint surgery. The traditional surgical approach to fixing joint conditions is through an open approach that requires a large incision to visualize the inner joint structures. Arthroscopy allows the surgeon to see the inside of a joint without the need for such large incisions and with the same success rates.
The way an orthopedic surgeon can see inside a joint is by using specialized instruments inserted under the skin. One includes a tiny, fiberoptic camera inserted into a buttonhole-sized incision. The camera transmits the images to a high-definition monitor where the surgeon can clearly see the inner joint structures in vivid detail. Arthroscopic surgery is a newer orthopedic treatment, and the goal is to minimize surgical risks and recovery times. Less invasive surgery generally requires shorter hospitalizations. It also allows patients to return to their usual activities much more quickly than they would if they had had open surgery.
Open surgery may be preferable for more intensive joint replacement surgeries, as the size and scope of the work make it necessary to create a larger incision. It may also be necessary to prevent complications, as the larger space increases the surgeon’s chances of successful patient treatment. You may also have open and arthroscopic surgical procedures performed during the same operation.
Learn More About Arthroscopy
Wondering what’s causing your chronic joint pain? Make an appointment with your local orthopedic surgeon for a definitive diagnosis. You can trust our board-certified orthopedic surgeons at Comprehensive Spine Institute to help you get back to fighting fit if you’re suffering from chronic joint pain. Our physicians take all factors into account to decide whether arthroscopic or open surgery would be best for you based on your health and recovery concerns.
Book your appointment with Comprehensive Spine Institute by calling (727) 300-2537 today.