It is a surgical procedure which is minimally invasive. In this procedure, the surgeon examines the joint or sometimes tries to repair any damaged conditions. Arthroscopic procedures are performed to evaluate, understand and treat many orthopedic conditions like torn cartilage (“meniscus"), torn surface (articular) cartilage, ACL reconstruction, and trimming damaged cartilage. It can be performed on the knees, and other joints like the hip, shoulder, spine, wrist and Temporomandibular joint. The first ever arthroscopy was performed in the year 1912 by Professor Kenji Takagi in Tokyo and has been undergoing constant improvisations to suit the changing requirements.
Arthroscopy VS Traditional surgery
Arthroscopy is also performed as traditional surgery under anesthesia. It scores over traditional surgery in many aspects. The joint does not have to be exposed or opened fully. The instruments that are used are compact. Surgeons can view the joint area on a video monitor, can diagnose and repair torn joint tissue, such as ligaments (ACL< PCL< MCL) and menisci or cartilage. It is usually the best method for professional athletes as they cannot spend more time in the hospital. The incisions are smaller, there is less blood loss and faster recovery in arthroscopy.
When is arthroscopy recommended ?
The surgeon usually recommends arthroscopy in full or partial ligament tear repairs or repair of torn cartilage, rotator cuff tears, frozen shoulder, hip and spine problems like spinal disc herniation or degenerative discs, general spine trauma, femora acetabular impingement (FAI) and any other degenerative conditions. The doctor mainly advises MRI or magnetic resonance imaging to arrive at a conclusion along with x-ray’s if required.
How is arthroscopy done ?
It is an easier surgery as compared to open surgery. The surgeon doing it must have technical expertise. The International Society of Arthroscopy, Knee Surgery and Orthopedic Sports Medicine (ISAKOS) holds a list of approved courses for gaining surgical skills and our orthopedic surgeons in KIMS have cleared these courses successfully. Miniature instruments are used along with a video camera (fibreoptic camera) along with a probe or arthroscope. A special fluid is used to view the joint area more clearly. The arthroscope is inserted in to the damaged area through a small incision that surgeon makes. The incision is about 4 mm to 6mm in size. The scope or probe is very thin just like a drinking straw. The fibreoptic camera flashes out images on the screen; the doctor visualizes them and uses the probe to repair the damaged cartilage, reconstruct the torn ligaments or shoulder ligaments or correct your shoulder, hip or wrist problems. After surgeon repairs them he stitches up the incisions which if soluble need not be removed if insoluble they need to be removed after 10 days.
Immediately after the arthroscopy ?
You will be wheeled into the recovery room until you start feeling better. You may have stay in the hospital for a night and will be discharged usually the next day. Before you are discharged, our physical therapist will see you and tell you the accurate rehabilitation exercises, if required you need a therapist at home to help you get back your lost movements. The therapy usually starts as per the advice of your orthopedic surgeon. You must proactively exercise to regain the motion of your affected area.
At Home :
Your recovery begins at home. Pain relievers and antibiotic medication will be prescribed for healing. Get a good physiotherapist to help you with your flexibility. Do not neglect the advice of your orthopedic surgeon.
It is a time-tested safe procedure and risks are not uncommon. The Patient may experience severe swelling in the area, but that goes away with medications and physiotherapy, though very rare blood clots in the vein may occur leading to severe complications. This just very rare and uncommon and should not be seen as a hindrance.
KIMS is a multi specialty hospital with every department as a centre of performing Excellence. Our orthopedic surgeons are the best surgeons in Hyderabad and have a distinction of performing extensive orthopedic procedures. Our surgeons are well trained experienced and patient friendly in their approach. Arthroscopic surgeries are done with extensive care and have yielded very good outcomes. Our operation theatres are environment friendly and we have the equipment and expertise to perform emergency orthopedic surgeries.