Arthroscopy is a minimally invasive procedure used for the diagnosis and treatment of conditions related to the joints. It is performed with the help of a special instrument called an arthroscope. It comes with an attached video camera and a light. What is observed by the camera is recorded and can be viewed by the surgeon on a television monitor.
Arthroscopic knee surgery is an alternative to total knee replacement and other forms of knee replacement surgery. During the knee arthroscopic surgery, small incisions are made to insert an arthroscope and other surgical tools to correct a defect in or around the knee joint. Total knee replacement, on the other hand, refers to complete removal and replacement of the diseased joint with a prosthetic implant.
Knee arthroscopy is conducted for the diagnosis and treatment of the following conditions:
First, the surgeon administers anaesthesia. The anaesthesia could be general, local, or spinal, depending on the purpose of the surgery. General anaesthesia causes unconsciousness, local anaesthetic makes area around the knee numb and spinal anaesthetic results in numbness in the lower part of the body.
An incision is made on the knee and then sterile or saline water is injected through the incision to cause expansion. During the surgery, pulse rate, blood pressure, and oxygen levels are continuously monitored.
The surgical site is cleaned with an antiseptic and an incision is made in the area. The arthroscope is then inserted through the incision into the joint, and the images of the joint are produced on the monitor allowing the surgeon to see the internal structure of the knee.
Other incisions are made to insert the surgical tools and the arthroscopic knee surgery is performed. The saline and water are drained from the knee after the procedure. The incision is closed with sutures.
The patient is discharged from the hospital as soon as he or she is comfortable walking with the help of crutches. In many cases, the patient is discharged on the same or the next day of the surgery.
Knee arthroscopy recovery time is minimal and the patient is able to recover within a few days. An Ace bandage is applied to the surgical site after the surgery to reduce swelling and pain in the leg. The wound should be kept clean and dry and the surgeon should be notified if continuous drainage is seen or if body temperature is elevated.
Based on the type of surgery and procedure, specific instructions regarding physical exercises are given to the client. Medication regimen should be followed strictly to ensure minimal knee arthroscopy recovery time and the physician should be notified if you take any new medication.
Swelling and pain can be relieved by application of the ice and elevating the lower extremity. Physical exercises should be performed as recommended by the physiotherapist as it helps increase the range of motion.
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