What is Knee Arthroscopy?

Knee arthroscopy is one of the most popular medical procedures used to diagnose and repair an injured knee. Your San Diego pediatric orthopedic doctor may recommend this type of surgery if your child is experiencing a lot of pain in the knee and no longer responds to nonsurgical treatments such as medication and physical therapy. This procedure is used to fix the following knee injuries: ACL/PCL tear, torn meniscus, Baker’s cyst, inflamed synovial tissue, patella problems, knee fracture, and knee sepsis.

What Happens During a Knee Arthroscopy?

If your child is healthy, the knee arthroscopy will be performed as an outpatient procedure. Your child will be put to sleep using local, regional, or general anesthesia. A pediatric orthopedic surgeon begins the procedure by making small incisions and pumping saline water to expand the knee, making it easier to see the injured joint.

A small camera—called an arthroscope—is placed inside the knee and will display real-time videos in the monitor inside the operating room so that the surgeon can determine where the problem lies and fix it. After the surgeon identifies and corrects the injury, he will drain the saline water and close the cuts with stitches.

Why Undergo a Knee Arthroscopy?

What’s great about a knee arthroscopy is that it is minimally invasive. The arthroscope is very small, which means the surgeon will have to make very small cuts compared to the larger ones made during an open surgery.

Depending on the extent of damage, the procedure will take less than an hour and your child can go home the very same day. Since an arthroscopy is less invasive, there is less pain involved, less complications, and faster recovery times. On the other hand, a traditional open knee surgery could place your young athlete out of commission for a considerable amount of time.

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