Arthroscopy is a surgical instrument used by an orthopedic doctor to see inside the joint to diagnose or treat the disease. By seeing inside the joint, the treating physician can diagnose many of its diseases and can surgically treat some of them through arthroscopy.
The process of diagnosing joint disease usually goes through certain stages. The doctor first tries to talk to the patient to get the necessary information about his problems.
He then examines her and then tries to get closer to the diagnosis through tests and imaging such as plain radiography, CT scan or MRI.
Sometimes it is not possible to accurately diagnose the disease after performing the mentioned procedures. In these cases, it may be possible to diagnose the disease through an arthroscope and inside the joint.
Arthroscopy can treat ligament rupture in the shoulder and knee. Damaged cartilage in the shoulder or knee and damaged meniscus in the knee can be repaired or removed.
Repair or reconstruction of the anterior cruciate ligament in the knee or removal of inflamed tissue in the knee, shoulder, elbow, wrist and ankle is possible with an arthroscope. An arthroscope can help remove free bones or cartilage in their knees, elbows, wrists and ankles.
Arthroscope can treat carpal tunnel syndrome in the wrist area. Although the rhon of each joint can be seen with an arthroscope, arthroscopy is performed on six more joints, including the knee, shoulder, elbow, hip, wrist, and ankle.
The most important part of an arthroscope is a hollow metal tube about the size of a straw (meaning straws used to drink liquids).
At one end of the metal tube is a very accurate video camera and there are a large number of lenses inside the tube. The orthopedist inserts the tube into the joint space through a gap of a few millimeters, and then the images taken by the camera are transferred to a high-resolution monitor so that the treating physician can see the images inside the joint on the monitor.A powerful light source through the same tube provides enough light to see inside the joint. Another narrow tube enters the joint through another slit to send some fluid into it.
The purpose of this is to remove the turbid fluid inside the joint and replace it with a clear liquid so that it can be seen better inside the joint, and the other reason is to increase the volume inside the joint so that the joint components are more spaced apart and seen better. And provide space for the arthroscope to move through the joint. The orthopedist can see many parts of the joint through an arthroscope and diagnose diseases and lesions.
The treating physician may insert special surgical instruments through another small incision in the joint and use them to surgically treat some intra-articular lesions.These devices are very diverse. Some of them are used like knives for cutting. With others that have a rotating head, parts of the tissues inside the joint can be shaved. Lasers can also be used during arthroscopy.
Arthroscopic treatment is usually an outpatient surgery in which the patient is hospitalized for a short time, usually a few hours before surgery, and after arthroscopy can be discharged the same day.
As with any surgery, the patient should be under general anesthesia or lumbar anesthesia, or rarely local anesthesia, by an anesthetist.Therefore, the patient should not eat or drink for at least eight hours before the operation. The whole arthroscopy may take about half to an hour.
If you are not completely anesthetized during the operation, you can also see an arthroscope through a monitor. At the end of the surgery, the equipment is removed and the skin incisions are sutured and bandaged.
Arthroscopic complications are not common, but like any other surgery, there is a risk of infection, inflammation of the veins, excessive swelling and bleeding, and damage to blood vessels or nerves. The risk of complications from arthroscopy is less than one percent if done correctly.
Benefits of Arthroscopy
Although people pay more attention to arthroscopy because of its use in the treatment of famous athletes, arthroscopy treatment in some diseases can simplify surgery, reduce the patient's pain after surgery, and shorten the recovery period Because in open surgery, a large incision may be made and the risk of neurovascular damage, infection, soft tissue adhesions and joint dryness, and a longer recovery period is higher. The patient can usually be discharged from the hospital the same day or the day after surgery. Often the patient can return to work after a few days.