Ankle ArthroscopyArthroscopy is a surgical procedure that allows the doctor to view the body joints using a miniature video camera, called arthroscope. Arthroscopy allows your doctor to study the surface of joints and soft tissues that surround them. This procedure can be used to diagnose problems with joints, to remove foreign bodies or to monitor disease.
This procedure is very often recommended in treating ankle problems that may appear after traumas, or because of some inflammatory conditions. Being very efficient, ankle arthroscopy is starting to be used more and more nowadays and to replace old procedures like arthrotomy incisions or ankle arthrodesis. There are a lot of ankle and joint conditions that may be treated or diagnose by arthroscopy like: syndesmotic impingement, arthritis both traumatic and degenerative.
Ankle arthroscopy is used to diagnose when the patient feels pain at the ankle’s level, stiffness, instability and swelling. This procedure is not recommended in case of sever edema or a moderate degenerative joint problem. Also it has to be avoided when the soft tissue is infected, the leg is not very well vascularized or if the joint condition is degenerative and severe.
If the situation requires, a CT scan may be performed in order to find out more information about bony cyst. Also a radiography of the lateral parts of the ankle joint, is needed in order to find bony spurs, chists, malalignment or other bony abnormalities. In order to find abnormalities at the ligament level or tendons abnormalities MRI scan is used because it gives details about the soft tissues. Is the patient may suffer from infection a joint aspiration may be a solution.
Because the cause of the ankle problem may be different is better to perform an ankle arthroscopy at the same time with other tests. For instance the ankle arthoscopy may deal with osteochondral lesion, but the same patient may also have other problems like hind foot varus deformity, that may need also appropriate approach. Before performing an ankle arthroscopy, is normal that the location of the problem in the ankle joint and the nature of the problem must be determined. The patient will have 3 possible positions to be seated for the athroscopy: lateral, supine and prone. After the surgery, patients are advised to move their toes, and hips. Cryotherapy may also help .
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