Almost all arthroscopic knee surgery is done on an outpatient basis.
The Wisconsin Bone & Joint orthopaedic surgeon will make a few small incisions in your knee. A sterile solution will be used to fill the knee joint and rinse away any cloudy fluid. This helps your orthopaedic surgeon see your knee clearly and in great detail.
Your surgeon’s first task is to properly diagnose your problem. He or she will insert the arthroscope and use the image projected on the screen to guide the procedure. If surgical treatment is needed, your surgeon will insert tiny instruments through another small incision. These instruments might be scissors, motorized shavers, or lasers.
This part of the procedure usually lasts 30 minutes to over an hour. How long it takes depends upon the findings and the treatment necessary.
Arthroscopy for the knee is most commonly used for:
- Removal or repair of torn meniscal cartilage
- Reconstruction of a torn anterior cruciate ligament
- Trimming of torn pieces of articular cartilage
- Removal of loose fragments of bone or cartilage
- Removal of inflamed synovial tissue
Your surgeon may close your incisions with a stitch, staples or steri-strips (small bandaids) and cover them with a soft bandage.
You will be moved to the recovery room and should be able to go home within 1 or 2 hours. Be sure to have someone with you to drive you home.