If you suffer from joint pain, you may wonder what options are available to treat this condition. Many orthopedic surgeons perform arthroscopy, a type of minimally invasive surgery, to diagnose and treat problematic joint conditions.
This procedure involves using a special instrument called an arthroscope, a long, pencil-like tube with a camera and light at the end, to view and treat your damaged joint.
At OasisMD in Temecula, Encinitas, and San Diego, California, we have a team of highly skilled orthopedic surgeons. Our providers use arthroscopy to treat many conditions, such as joint issues in areas like the knee, wrist, and ankle.
Arthroscopy differs from traditional surgical approaches, and it brings with it many benefits. Take a moment to learn about the top four advantages of arthroscopy.
Arthroscopic surgery is a minimally invasive orthopedic procedure to examine and treat your joints. This is done when these parts of your body are causing pain or are not functioning properly because of injury, arthritis, or inflammation.
Some people may refer to arthroscopy as getting a “scope.” The joints most commonly examined and treated by arthroscopy include:
During the procedure, tiny incisions are made to allow the arthroscope to view the joint and inspect the type and extent of damage. The arthroscope sends real-time images to a monitor, allowing your provider to create a treatment plan or repair and remove damaged tissue.
Advantages of arthroscopy
Arthroscopic surgery is a great alternative to traditional surgery in many cases and has its own unique benefits that make it stand out. Here are the top four.
No surgery is without risk, but the risks associated with arthroscopy are minimized because the procedure uses minimally invasive techniques.
Arthroscopy only requires tiny incisions for the surgical tools and camera. This means that the risk of damage to surrounding tissues is much lower than in traditional surgery with a larger incision.
Smaller incisions also come with a lower risk of complications, like blood loss and infection. And because arthroscopy takes less time, you’re under anesthesia for a shorter period, reducing your risk of complications from it.
Arthroscopy provides exceptional diagnostic viewing compared to other methods, such as diagnostic MRI or X-ray. This allows your provider to better determine the best treatments required for your optimal recovery.
The camera attached to the end of the arthroscope sends clear, detailed, real-time images to your OasisMD surgeon’s monitor, helping them identify the source of your joint pain
Since arthroscopy usually only requires a few small incisions, you’ll have only a few small scars. Scar tissue around joints can be problematic since it is made from more dense fibers affecting your range of motion, so this benefit is big.
To further minimize scarring, keep your incision sites clean and moist and protect your skin from the sun as it heals. Eating a nutritious diet high in vitamins C and D helps promote healthy skin turnover as well.
Recovery is quicker
Injuries or chronic pain in a joint can significantly diminish your quality of life, leading to missing out on your favorite activities, sports, or events.
Also, the prospect of undergoing a lengthy recovery period after surgery can be just as daunting. Since arthroscopy is minimally invasive, most operations are outpatient procedures, allowing for a quicker return home.
Additionally, since there is less damage to surrounding tissues, your body heals faster because it can spend energy healing the treated area instead of other affected regions.
Even though recovery from minimally invasive surgeries is quicker than from traditional surgeries, it is not immediate. You won’t be able to return to sports or other intense physical activities for a few weeks, but most people return to their everyday routines within a few days.
If you want to learn more about arthroscopy and how it may benefit you, the best way is to set up a consultation with one of our providers at OasisMD. Contact the location nearest you, or request an appointment online now!