Arthroscopy is a medical procedure used to analyze and treat injuries and abnormalities within the human body. With all types of internal injury, it is important to have a clear view of what is going on within the joint. If this view is not available, it will not be possible to accurately diagnose the injury and treat it. Injuries, particularly in joints can be highly specific to the individual or highly complicated. This makes it incredibly difficult to diagnose injuries without scanning or actually opening the joint up.
Image scans are very useful as they are non invasive and can be used without any major trouble to the patient. It is not possible to open a joint up unless the injury is being examined. There is another option which comes into the picture and that is arthroscopy. Arthroscopy can be used in such situations as in involves an extremely small incision to be made. The scope is then sent into the joint or affected area to actually view the parts of the joint. In many cases, the doctor will have some idea about the problem based on the symptoms present and on the results of imaging scans that may have been conducted before the arthroscopy.
The knee joint is one of the most crucial joints of the body because of its importance in basic walking, jogging and running. The knee absorbs the shock generated by jolts while walking or running. It also allows the bones from the upper leg and the lower leg to move without generating any friction. The knee joint is filled with a fluid that helps with this lubrication and shock absorption.
Knee injuries are often the most difficult joint injuries to diagnose. They are almost always the most difficult joint injuries when it comes to treatment. A knee arthroscopy is conducted to check the nature of the joint. The knee arthroscopy may also be used to treat the injury if the arthroscope is equipped with surgical equipment at its end. Knee injuries have been known to end the career of several sports persons from fields as varied as cycling to soccer. Therefore, the treatment of knee injuries requires a procedure as delicate as arthroscopy.
Another application of arthroscopy is through the arthroscopic shoulder surgery procedure. The shoulder joints are also very strong and are used to anchor the arms of an individual to his or her torso. The shoulder joints should be able to take the entire weight of the body of an individual which may occur during pull-ups and other such exercises. Shoulder joint injuries are also common sporting injuries. Arthroscopic shoulder surgery is one method that can be used to treat this type of injury.
The arthroscopy recovery period depends entirely on the nature and scope of the procedure. If the procedure is just done for investigation, the arthroscopy recovery time will be just a few days. If arthroscopic surgery has been performed, the recovery period usually lasts for a few weeks at least as the joint heals. This also depends on the extent of the injury that has been treated. Minor ruptures or stretches of ligaments may take less time to heal than full blown tears. In some cases, particularly with knee arthroscopy procedures, the patient may be placed in cast similar to the cast applied on patients who have suffered from bone fractures. This is done to ensure that the joint does not move and damage itself during recover.
Patients who are in constant pain due to some injury must visit their doctor for assessment. This will help the doctor decide whether an arthroscopy is needed or not.