arthroscopy was developed approximately
20 years ago in both Canada and Europe.
Using minimally invasive surgical techniques
and fibre optic camera systems, the surgeon
can inspect the inside of the knee joint
and perform surgery with small instruments.
An arthroscopy may be useful in trimming
torn menisci following sporting accidents
and removing loose fragments of bone.
An arthroscopy can also be used to determine the amount and location wear and tear changes associated with osteoarthritis. This may help the surgeon determine whether a patient requires a knee replacement, and exactly what type of knee replacement is needed. This depends on the extent of the wear in any given area. The procedure might diminish the pain associated by the build up of painful substances within a swollen arthritic knee joint, avoiding the need for a knee replacement for several months, if not longer.
Most arthroscopy can be performed under general anaesthetic as a day case procedure, limiting the amount of time the patient has to stay in hospital.