Arthroscopy is a way to gain information about a joint injury or region of damage when X-rays and other imaging tests can’t show enough. At Denver Metro Orthopedics, P.C. in Englewood, Centennial, Lone Tree, and Aurora, Colorado, Stephen Thon, MD, and John Schwappach, MD, use arthroscopy to examine joint damage or make minor repairs within a joint. To see if you’re a candidate for this minimally invasive procedure, call Denver Metro Orthopedics, P.C., or schedule an appointment online today.
Arthroscopy is a minimally invasive procedure that serves two functions: diagnosing or repairing damage within a joint. At Denver Metro Orthopedics, Dr. Thon and Dr. Schwappach offer joint arthroscopy as a way of viewing damage directly and in real-time if you experience joint pain.
During arthroscopy, the providers make small incisions around the injured joint. If they’re simply using the procedure to view the inside, a single incision will suffice. Through that incision, they insert a long camera called an arthroscope with a light on the end. The feed from the camera appears live on a nearby high-definition screen.
By viewing the inside of a joint with an arthroscopy, Dr. Thon and Dr. Schwappach can make a diagnosis and assess the degree of damage for treatment planning.
In some cases, they may make repairs using the arthroscope for guidance. They manipulate small instruments through additional button-sized incisions to remove bone fragments or repair torn or inflamed tissue.
Denver Metro Orthopedics, P.C. offers arthroscopy for injuries and damage affecting the following joints:
Your shoulder is a ball-and-socket joint with a wide range of movement, which is unfortunately prone to an array of injuries. Dr. Thon and Dr. Schwappach can use shoulder arthroscopy to diagnose or manage impingements, rotator cuff tears, instability, damaged cartilage, bone spurs, or arthritis of the collarbone.
Your elbow is a hinge joint, so it doesn’t have the same range of motion as your shoulder. An elbow arthroscopy can diagnose or treat scar tissue, torn cartilage, arthritis, or bone spurs.
Your hips, which are also ball-and-socket joints, connect your legs to your torso. Using hip arthroscopy, the providers can diagnose or treat torn cartilage, bone spurs, inflammatory arthritis, fractures, and ligament tears.
Knee arthroscopy targets the knee joint. While it’s a hinge joint, it’s very complex and bears much of your weight. Knee arthroscopy can help Dr. Thon and Dr. Schwappach diagnose or treat a torn meniscus, inflamed synovial tissue, torn ligaments, patellar misalignment, a Baker’s cyst, or certain fractures within the knee.
Preparations before an arthroscopy depend on the specific joint and other factors, like the medications you take. The providers make sure you know what to expect and how to prepare in your case. Your preparation instructions might include:
Dr. Thon and Dr. Schwappach discuss options for anesthesia with you well in advance of the procedure and give you detailed answers to your questions about the process.
To determine if arthroscopy is necessary for your diagnosis, treatment, or both, call Denver Metro Orthopedics, P.C., or reserve an appointment online today.