Arthroscopy is a procedure used to examine the inside of a joint by inserting a thin tube (arthroscope) containing a camera and light through small cuts (incisions) near the joint. The camera sends a close-up video image of the joint to a TV monitor, where the doctor can look at the inside of the joint.
Arthroscopy can be used to diagnose joint diseases and injuries and to treat some joint problems. The doctor can insert surgical instruments through the arthroscope to take tissue samples or to repair injuries or damage to the joint. The doctor may make other small incisions in the joint to insert other instruments.
Generally, recovery after arthroscopic surgery is quicker and easier than after traditional surgery that uses larger incisions. Most people can go home from the hospital the same day.
Current as of: May 23, 2016
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review: William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine & Robert B. Keller, MD - Orthopedics
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2017 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
Donations to UW Health are managed by the University of Wisconsin Foundation, a publicly supported charitable organization under 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.