Knee Arthroscopic Surgery

Knee Arthroscopy

Arthroscopy is a surgical procedure in which an arthroscope (camera) is inserted into a joint. The benefits of arthroscopy involve smaller incisions, faster healing, a more rapid recovery, and less scarring. Arthroscopic surgical procedures are often performed on an outpatient basis and the patient is able to return home on the same day.

Conditions treated by Arthroscopy

  • Meniscus Tear  
  • ACL/PCL injury
  • Synovitis
  • Chondral flap
  • OCD lesion
  • Knee cap release
  • Loose bodies

Patient Presentation

Patients usually present following an acute injury to their knee. Pain is the most common presenting symptom. Some patients may experience clicking, catching, locking, giving way or knee swelling. As part of the diagnosis and work up, patients often require a plain xray and MRI scan.

Surgical Risks

Knee arthroscopy is generally regarded as a safe procedure with minimal patient risk. Some of the rare risks associated with this procedure include:

  • Bleeding into the joint (haemarthrosis) - 1 in 100
  • Infection - 1 in 1000
  • Damage to the cartilage or meniscus
  • Failure of the surgery to relieve symptoms
  • Knee stiffness
  • Scaring of the skin or lump under the wound
  • Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) - 1 in 750
  • Pulmonary embolus (PE) - risk 1 in 3000
  • Severe pain (Complex Regional Pain Syndrome) - rare

Post Operative

Following surgery you will go to the recovery room for a short period and then back to the Day Admissions ward. You will be allowed home once you have eaten something and also have mobilized safely. Occasionally some patients require crutches. You will have small waterproof dressings on the wounds with a large dressing which can be removed the day following surgery. You will also have an ice pack and we encourage regular icing over the first week. Patients are discharged with a prescription for pain killers and may also need anti-inflammatories. All patients will be reviewed by your surgeon prior to discharge and will be seen again in rooms 10-14 days post surgery.

Knee Arthroscopic pictures showing

Normal ACL

Normal Meniscus and Normal Knee Surface Cartilage

Meniscal tear

Loose Body

Absent ACL  (empty notch)


Find out more about Knee Arthroscopy with the following link