The term "arthroscopy" means - arthro - joint, scopy - viewing.
By inserting a miniature camera into the joint through a cut a few millimeters in length, it is possible to diagnose and/or operate in the most accurate manner in problems and conditions requiring surgical intervention, while avoiding potential complications and allowing for a short recovery time.
On the other hand, an "open" surgical procedure involves injuring the tissues enveloping the joint, a higher probability for infections, and a much longer recovery time, but the advantage of the "open" surgical process is a higher level of accuracy.
In an arthroscopic procedure, a miniature optical instrument is inserted into the joint through a minimal cut and it photographs the joint's interior. The surgeon sees the situation in an enlarged form and is capable of performing non-diagnostic procedures by inserting miniature surgical tools.
Though an arthroscopic procedure it is possible to assess with optimal accuracy the injury in various tissues stabilizing the skeletons, such as tears in ligaments and tendons, injuries of the cartilage and bones, which can limit the movement range or cause chronic pain.
During a microscopic diagnostic procedure it is possible that a situation will arise where there is need for a surgical procedure which can be performed by inserting miniature surgical tools through another minimal cut.
The surgeon also performs the surgical process using the miniature camera, with which he can see the situation enlarged on the screen.
Using arthroscopic surgery it is possible to suture torn ligaments, treat tissue infections, amputate ganglion cysts, clean inflammations from joints, repair cartilage injuries or help setting a fracture, removing foreign objects from the joint and so on.
Arthroscopy is carried out under general anesthesia.
At the end of the arthroscopic operation, the miniature cut is bandaged. It is recommended to rest for two to three days, and afterwards gradually use the joint which was operated on.
Recovery is expected within several days.
Possible but rare complications during arthroscopy include infections, neural injury, injury of the tendons, damage to the skin and paresthesia. In any case of complication it is recommended to consult the operating doctor for assistance.