A procedure performed in the knee-joint area, Knee Arthroscopic Surgery is involved in making a small incision in the skin to repair tissue injuries in bones, tissues and ligaments surrounding the knee and joint. By using an arthroscope, a small instrument used along a guiding lighted scope connected to a television screen. By creating three incisions in the knee, additional instruments could be placed inside. This surgery could be classified into minor and major procedures. The minor procedures involve flushing and lavage and debridement, which is the smoothing of bone surfaces and tissue fragments that are linked with Osteoarthritis. The major ones include realigning a dislocated knee and doing grafting operations of the ligaments.
Prior to surgery, an intensive examination must be done of the causes of trauma and pain that lead to the injury of the knee. A leaps and bounds adjustment have been made in arthroscopic surgeries which allows lesser time of recovery, less anesthesia administered and less incisions to be done.
The purpose of the surgery involves two general surgical classifications- first, an acute injury that destabilizes the knee and second, pain management for floating or displaced cartilage and rough bone. Acute injuries come about from traumatic injuries suffered by the knee tissues such as those suffered in sports accidents. This leads to unstable knees, knee dislocations and deficiency of knee mobility. Pain management surgeries alleviate discomforts of the knee due to Osteoarthritis. As the name itself suggests, it relieves pain and discomfort in the knee area mostly caused by chronic conditions and uses elective surgical procedures to treat bone and cartilage surfaces.
Mostly done in an outpatient setting, Knee Arthroscopic Surgeries are done usually under a General Anesthesia, Spinal or Epidural, a regional block or local anesthetic are also sometimes being used. Surgery could commence if enough anesthesia is being administered. An IV Line is tagged upon admission for fluid administration. After surgery, sterile dressings are placed over the incision site while a Brace Wrap is placed in the region surrounding the joint.
Arthroscopic Surgery for Acute Injuries
The knee stabilizes itself with the help of four ligaments, namely the Anterior and Posterior Cruciate Ligaments (ACL/PCL) and the Medial and Lateral Collateral Ligaments (MCL/LCL). When one of these ligaments is torn by means of trauma or sports injury, the knee “buckles”, or it gives way. These ligaments will also make the knee track an unusual direction rather than its normal movement. Multiple tears in knee ligaments would also lead to more repairs done in the affected knee.
Patello-Femoral Syndrome (PFS)
A patient’s patella without a good support might cause it to be shaky and agonizingly painful when you move. Chronic problems might arise in people with proper patella tracking in the femoral area. It is linked to conditions that include foot pronation or if not by just simply overusing the muscles. As the patella is moved, examination can be done by the physician around the surrounding cartilage that has increasing friction. The ease of movement is increased by smoothing the damaged cartilage which in turn gets rid of pain. A tendon can make the patella track off the center part of the femur. With lateral release surgery, the patella is enforced back in its usual movements.
Arthroscopic Knee Surgeries could also treat a torn Meniscus, a cartilage resembling the shape of a crescent which pads the knee. Without this internal knee cushion, it could result to extreme pain. Although it could happen in sport-related injuries, it is more evident in Osteoarthritis and Rheumatoid Arthritis. A Lavage and Debridement is a procedure in which the surgeon flushes out floating or displaced tissue pieces. Then the bone surface is smoothened and leveled to decrease the amount of pain.
Diagnosis and Preparation
Knee injuries are more common in athletes who play contact sports and to elder people due to the decreased function of the knees, the ones who carries most of the body’s weight. Diagnosing knee injuries or damage contains a Physical Examination, X-rays and more thorough diagnostic imagery examinations such as CT scan and MRI. If clients experience intense knee pain, then they consult a physician, which decides if that entails for an operation and rehabilitation after it.
Arthroscopic Surgery is a bloodless surgery and it also presents lesser complications. The patient’s underlying condition is one reliable factor if he/she is eligible to go for an Arthroscopic procedure. Another important thing to consider to consider is the level of the person’s tolerance to the anesthetic being used. Lung and heart functions should be ideal for the procedure, including conditions such as Heart Failure, High Blood Pressure and Diabetes Mellitus. Some contraindicated medications should also be withdrawn, such as anticoagulants or blood thinners.
Physical Examinations, Blood Tests and Urine samples are taken prior to the surgery as part of the evaluation during the pre-operative phase. Patients 50 years old and above who are experiencing heart and lung problems have to obtain an ECG result together with a Chest X-Ray. If the body is experiencing signs of infection, the surgical procedure is immediately cancelled unless results reveal a possible joint infection. After the two hours surgery, the patient is required to rest until anesthetic effects are cleared out. Most outpatient surgeries instruct the person who underwent Arthroscopic Knee Surgery to avoid driving and doing activities that require mental stimulation. If follow-up visits are to be done, it is made a week after when the dressings placed could be thrown off. the dressings are removed.