Arthroscopic Knee Surgery

Knee arthroscopy is a minimally invasive (“keyhole”) surgical procedure that allows direct inspection of the joint and its structures and treatment of several knee conditions. This is usually done as a day surgery procedure.

Early assessment and management of sports knee injuries allows appropriate diagnosis and management of ligament injuries, cartilage injuries and meniscal tears and Dr Rae is always happy to fit in acute injuries, and organise their investigation and treatment.

The conditions most commonly treated through knee arthroscopy are meniscal tears and anterior cruciate ligament ruptures.

Meniscal tears commonly occur in young patients as the result of twisting or turning on a flexed knee, commonly during a sporting contest. The frequently cause mechanical symptoms such as clicking, locking and instability and should be assessed for the potential for repair in young patients, but more commonly will need debridement (removal of the torn section). Instability symptoms in a knee that has had a previous ACL rupture can be treated with an ACL reconstruction. This usually involves of the use of 2 hamstring tendons from the same knee that are used to reconstruct the tendon through accurately placed bone tunnels and appropriate tensioning. This requires adherence to a prescribed rehabilitation program post operatively.

Meniscal tears however occur more frequently as we get older and this is a result of degeneration (wear and tear) in the cartilage in this group. Those over 45 in the absence of a locking knee should try 3 months of physiotherapy and simple pain killers before proceeding with arthroscopic surgery as two thirds of patients will be able to avoid arthroscopic surgery with this protocol with the remaining patients receiving benefit from surgery. Once arthritis is established on xrays there is only selective use for arthroscopic debridement. The mainstay of treatment for moderate arthritis is simple pain killers, weight loss, physiotherapy and activity modification.

If you want to find out more information about your problem and allow our knee surgeon, Dr Hamish Rae to asses you case right here in Sydney. You can make an appointment at 80055111.