The knee is one of the largest and most complex joints in the body, consisting of bones, ligaments, tendons, and cartilage.
A lot of moving parts and soft tissue in a body part which takes a lot of abuse mean a lot of opportunity for injuries. Any way you move during the course of the day means movement for this joint, without even realizing it. It seems that only when an injury happens do people realize how much they depend on their knees.
The knee joins the femur (thigh bone) to the Tibia (shin bone). A smaller bone runs alongside the tibia called the fibula, and the kneecap, or patella, are the other bones that make the knee joint. The kneecap rests against a groove at the end of the femur, allowing it to move around.
There is a protective layer of tissue called cartilage which provides cushioning, allowing the bones to glide around without difficulty. Between the femur and tibia are disks of tissue called menisci which also help absorb the pounding the knee takes. Now add tendons (which connect the knee bones to the leg muscles that move the knee joint) and ligaments (which join the knee bones and provide stability to the knee). Your knee also contains many bursae, or fluid-filled sacs, help the knee move smoothly. With the constant demand on this joint and its complexity, much can go wrong.
And when it does, a phenomenal tool for diagnosis is Arthroscopy, a minimally invasive surgical technique. Using a small incision and an even smaller miniature camera attached to the arthroscope, your orthopedic surgeon gets a view of what has transpired and what it will take to make you better.
Knee arthroscopy is most commonly used for:
- torn anterior or posterior cruciate ligaments
- torn meniscus (the cartilage between the bones in the knee)
- patella (kneecap) that is out of position
- trimming pieces of torn cartilage that are loose in the joint
- removal of a Baker’s cyst
- fractures in the knee bones
- swollen synovium (the lining in the joint)
- treating inflammation and infections
Dr. David Lopez will discuss the options of anesthetic prior to your procedure. Depending on you, your health, and your injury; there is a choice of local numbing, regional numbing, or general anesthesia when you are asleep. The procedure typically takes less than one hour, and you will likely go home right after with instructions to ice to reduce swelling.
Using this procedure, a minimally invasive procedure, results in less pain, less recovery time, and less scarring. It can be done as outpatient surgery, which saves time and reduces expense.
Not sure if you are a candidate for arthroscopy? The answer is easy to find out in one of Dr. David Lopez’s 3 convenient offices. Awarded NJ Top Doc for 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, and 2014, his extensive training allows him to access your medical needs to find the best solution for you and your lifestyle.
Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Specialists
Dr David V Lopez Md FAAOS
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