Arthroscopy is used to diagnose and treat damaged joints. After a small incision is made, the orthopedic surgeon inserts an arthroscope – a tiny instrument containing optical fibers and lenses – to view the inside of the joint. This approach is most frequently utilized for a variety of joint issues that affect the:
Additional incisions are required for arthroscopic surgery, in which the actual treatment procedure is performed in addition to examining the joint.
Typically, arthroscopy is conducted in an outpatient setting and the patient can return home the same day. General, regional, or local anesthesia will be administered so it is necessary to arrange for a friend or family member to drive you home following the arthroscopic surgery.
Since arthroscopy is less invasive and intense than traditional surgery, there should be less overall joint discomfort and stiffness, as well as decreased recovery time. Although full recovery can take several weeks or months, you will be safe to return to work or school within a few days, depending on the procedure.
This kind of procedure has become very standard and complications are rare; however, call your doctor immediately if any of the following occur:
- Increased Pain
- Fever (greater than 101° F)
- Odorous Fluid Excretion from Incision
Adhere to all of the physician’s instructions after the surgery in order to ensure a speedy and successful recovery. It is imperative to keep the surgical bandages dry unil instructed to remove them. Take any prescribed medications, perform directed rehabilitation exercises, and be sure to schedule necessary follow-up appointments.