Arthroscopic knee surgeries are performed for various reasons, the most common being a complete or partial tear of the meniscus , found inside the knee,
but are also performed for extracting a loose body in the knee , which separates from its location, or for treating injuries to the knees’ cartilage. Less often, the surgery is performed dislocationsq subluxations of the knee cap, or as an assisting tool in fractures of the upper tibia.
Additionally, it is possible to perform an arthroscopic reconstructive surgery of torn knee ligaments, mostly of the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL). These ligaments play a crucial role in operating the knee, and in maintaining its stability.
First, a general examination is performed, which includes patient history and medication history. This examination is typically performed by the Anesthetist doctor, which will perform Anesthesia during the operation.
Upon waking up from Anesthesia, a cushioned bandage will be wrapped around the knee, which must be left dry in place for the first two days.
Due to the tiny incisions which are not stitched, enabling the accumulating liquid to drain out of the knee, some bleeding may occur on the bandage surface. This phenomenon is common and should not make the patient uncomfortable. If this occurs, some additional bandage and an ice bag may be applied around the knee.
After two days the bandage should be removed, and a shower may be taken, complete with soap and water, and no additional bandage is usually necessary. The patient will receive anti inflammatory, cortisone-free pills for the first post procedure days, to relieve pain, reduce knee swelling, and expedite recovery.
Due to the smallest chances of infection related risks, and resulting from an inability to prescribe antibiotics prior to surgery to completely remove the risk, there is no need for pre-surgery antibiotic treatment.
Clearly, if additional swelling occurs in the knee post surgery, accompanied by a local as well as general fever, redness and limitation of knee movement - please see the operating physician or the nearest hospital.
Preventing Blood Clots in the Thigh
Since this is a short surgical procedure, this complication is rare. Taking additional anti-clotting medication will not solve this problem.
The best treatment is full usage of the operated leg as soon as the day of the operation, and, with no concern, using the full range of movement possible in the knee.
Return to a Fully Active Life
After the surgery, it is recommended to immediately return to fully walking using the operated leg, while applying normal pressure on the leg as soon as the day of surgery, and without the use of crutches. It is also recommended for the patient to immediately begin full range of motion. This self exercise includes movements to fully extending the knee, and fully bending it, by the patient himself. The return to an active life is not only the goal of each patient facing surgery, but ,particularly in this type of minimal surgical intervention, it constitutes an important factor in the post surgery treatment. Adhering to these instructions will not only enable a patient to return to activity within a short time period, but will allow athletes to return to full athletic activity.
If you suffer from an Orthopedic problem in your knee, hip or ankle, Dr. Suzanna Horovitz may be able to assist you to return to an active life. For consultation and diagnosis, please contact us.