Arthroscopy is a minimally invasive procedure that allows doctors to examine tissues inside the knee. It is often performed to confirm a diagnosis made after a physical examination and other imaging tests such as MRI, CT or X-rays.
During an arthroscopic procedure, a thin fiberoptic light, magnifying lens and tiny television camera are inserted into the knee, allowing your doctor to examine the joint in great detail.
For some patients, it is then possible to treat the problem using a few additional instruments inserted through small incisions around the joint. Sports injuries are often repairable with arthroscopy. Knee injuries that are frequently treated using arthroscopic techniques include meniscal tears, mild arthritis, loose bone or cartilage, ACL and PCL tears, synovitis (swelling of the joint lining) and patellar (knee cap) misalignment.
Total Knee Replacement
Arthritis and certain knee injuries and diseases can damage the cartilage that normally cushions the knee joint, leading to pain and stiffness. A knee replacement may be recommended when more conservative treatments -- such as anti-inflammatory medications and cortisone injections -- fail to relieve pain or improve movement.
During a total knee replacement, the entire joint is replaced with an artificial prosthesis. The surgery itself lasts between one-and-a-half and three hours. After the procedure, patients usually experience immediate relief from joint pain. Physical therapy starts right away to speed healing and to ensure that the patient enjoys full use of the joint. Knee replacements today last about 20 years in 85-90% of patients.
Made of cushioning cartilage, the C-shaped meniscus performs many functions in the knee: it stabilizes the joint, helps it carry weight, facilitates turning in many directions, and keeps the femur (thighbone) and tibia (shin) from rubbing together. Athletic injury (trauma) or weakened tissue associated with aging or illness (degeneration) can tear the meniscus. Movements most likely to result in a meniscal tear are twisting the knee, pivoting, cutting and rapidly decelerating. A meniscal tear may occur at the same time as an ACL tear.
Symptoms of a meniscal tear include stiffness, swelling, pain, tightness, tenderness, and fluid build-up frequently described as "water on the knee." If a piece of the meniscus breaks off in the joint, the knee may pop, slip or lock (become stuck at a 45-degree angle until physically moved out of the position).
Located in the back of the knee, the PCL (posterior cruciate ligament) works together with the ACL and two other ligaments to stabilize the knee joint. Its particular function is to prevent the tibia from moving too far backwards. Though strong, the PCL can be stretched or torn given enough force. Events that can lead to PCL injury include falling on a bent knee while playing a sport, striking the knee below the kneecap in a car accident, and dislocating the knee.
Signs that you may have injured your PCL include immediate swelling followed by difficulty walking, pain when attempting to move the knee, and an intermittent feeling of instability.
A new development in Orthopedics, this procedure can help relieve pain for people who are suffering from chronic knee pain due to "bone marrow lesions"(BMLs). BMLs lie within the bone marrow and cause swelling, immense pain, and limited mobility. They can also be the earliest signs of arthritis in the knee. While this painful condition can be addressed by a total knee replacement, Subchondroplasty offers a much less invasive option that can restore mobility and function.
This new procedure has shown to be effective in treating bone swelling beneath the articular surface of the femur and tibia in the knee joint. Using arthroscopic and fluoroscopic imaging, subchondroplasty can accurately locate the source of the defect and thus allow for the injection of a calcium phospate substance. This substance soon solidfies after the injection and is gradually absorbed over time, allowing healthier bone to develop in the location of the BMLs.
We are pleased to offer our patients a consultation to see if they are a candidate for this new procedure. Please call our office to schedule an appointment for your consultation.
An informational packet can be found under Patient Information. Please also refer to the video below for more information about this procedure: