Unlock the Benefits of Elbow Arthroscopy at City Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine
Discover Advanced Elbow Care
Demystifying Elbow Arthroscopy
Elbow arthroscopy is a cutting-edge surgical technique employing an arthroscope – a slender, fiber-optic camera – to gain insight into the internal workings of the elbow. This procedure helps confirm diagnoses, and if any damage or anomalies are detected, repairs can often be performed during the same operation. Elbow arthroscopy is an ideal choice for numerous conditions due to its advantages: smaller incisions, quicker recovery, and reduced scarring compared to traditional open surgery. Most patients can return home on the day of the procedure and resume regular activities within weeks. The procedure also offers benefits such as diminished pain, improved range of motion, and restored joint function.
Elbow arthroscopy is commonly utilized for simple joint manipulations, including fracture care, debridement, and the removal of bone fragments. It’s also a valuable tool for diagnosing and examining joint irregularities to provide accurate diagnoses for elbow conditions.
The Elbow Arthroscopy Process
During elbow arthroscopy, the surgeon creates a small incision near the affected elbow area and inserts an arthroscope – a long, flexible tube housing a camera and a small light at its tip. This device displays magnified, real-time images of the elbow joint on a video monitor for the surgeon to analyze. This diagnostic phase scrutinizes the elbow for signs of ligament tears, damage, or degeneration, along with other internal structural issues.
If any damage is detected, it can often be rectified during the same procedure by introducing additional small incisions to facilitate the use of tiny surgical instruments. These instruments enable the surgeon to repair damaged cartilage, rejoin torn ends, remove loose tissue, or realign the joint to reduce pain and inflammation. After the repairs are complete, the tools and arthroscope are removed, and the incisions are meticulously sutured. The area is then dressed, with smaller bandages replacing the dressing as the incisions heal.
Elbow Arthroscopy Risks
While elbow arthroscopy is generally considered a safer and more efficient alternative to traditional elbow procedures, it’s essential to acknowledge potential risks inherent to any surgical procedure, which may include:
- Reaction to anesthesia
- Nerve or blood vessel damage
- Tissue damage
- Prolonged pain
- Blood clots
Patients should thoroughly discuss these and other risks with their physician before embarking on elbow arthroscopy.
Elbow Arthroscopy Recovery and Outcomes
To minimize swelling, the elbow is elevated, and ice is applied intermittently during the initial 48 hours post-surgery. In most cases, a splint is placed on the arm for several days. As the healing process commences, a tailored physical therapy regimen helps patients regain strength, flexibility, and range of motion. Recovery times may vary depending on the type of repair performed, but most individuals achieve full recovery within several months.
While arthroscopy boasts numerous advantages over conventional elbow surgery, it may not be suitable for all patients, particularly those with conditions affecting hard-to-visualize areas. In such instances, traditional surgery may be more appropriate.
Seek Expert Elbow Care
Experience the advantages of elbow arthroscopy for yourself at City Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine. Don’t let elbow discomfort hold you back.