Dr. Vijay Chandar
Bone & Joint Clinic


Knee Arthroscopy
What is Knee Arthroscopy?

Arthroscopy is a term that comes from two Greek words, "Arthro" meaning joint, and "Skopein" meaning to examine. The benefits of arthroscopy involve smaller incisions, faster healing, a more rapid recovery, and less scarring.

What is Knee Arthroscopy?
Knee arthroscopy is a surgical procedure that allows your operating surgeon to view the knee joint without making a large incision (cut) through the skin and other soft by inserting a small camera, called an "Arthroscope" into your knee joint and visualizing pictures on a video monitor. Because the arthroscope and specialized surgical instruments are thin, your surgeon can use very small incisions, rather than the larger incision needed for open surgery thereby helping in early recovery and return to activity.

When Knee Arthroscopy is recommended ?

Your doctor may recommend knee arthroscopy if you have a painful condition of the knee that does not respond to nonsurgical treatment such as rest, physical therapy, and medications or injections that can reduce inflammation. Knee arthroscopy may relieve painful symptoms of many problems that damage the cartilage surfaces and other soft tissues surrounding the joint. Common arthroscopic procedures for the knee include.

Removal or repair of a torn meniscus
Reconstruction of a torn anterior cruciate ligament
Removal of inflamed synovial tissue
Trimming of damaged articular cartilage
Removal of loose fragments of bone or cartilage
Treatment of patella (kneecap) problems

What will my surgeon see inside the knee joint?

The ends of the bones that form the knee joint are covered with a smooth covering called "Articular Cartilage". The knee joint also contains a thin lining of fluid secreting tissue called the "Synovial Membrane"which releases fluid that lubricates the cartilage and reduces friction. There are four primary ligaments in your knee, two "Cruciates Ligaments" and two "Collateral Ligaments". The knee also contains two wedge-shaped shock absorbing gel pads called "Meniscii" between your thighbone and shinbone. Your operating surgeon will be able to visualize these structures and make an accurate diagnosis as well as repair or reconstruct the underlying damage during arthroscopic surgery of your knee joint.

Realistic Expectations

The success of your surgery will depend largely on how well you follow your orthopaedic surgeon instructions at home during the first few weeks after surgery. Your recovery will depend on the type of damage that was present in your knee and most patients return to full, unrestricted activities after arthroscopy. Unless you have had a ligament reconstruction, you should be able to return to most physical activities after "6 - 8 weeks", or sometimes much sooner. Higher impact activities may need to be avoided for a longer time. For patients involved in heavy work, it may be longer before you can return to your job. Your treating surgeon will discuss in detail with you when you can return to your range of activities. Sometimes, the damage to your knee can be severe enough that it cannot be completely reversed with surgery.