Ankle Arthroscopy

Ankle Arthroscopy Overview

Ankle arthroscopy is a minimally invasive procedure that treats a variety of ankle injuries and conditions. A fiber optic camera or arthroscope is used to visualize the ankle joint and tiny surgical instruments are used to make repairs. Carolina Orthopaedics and Neurological Associates’ (CONA) foot and ankle specialists are ankle arthroscopy experts.

How is ankle arthroscopy performed?

Outpatient ankle arthroscopy is performed under general anesthesia. A CONA specialist:

  1. Begins surgery. The arthroscope is carefully guided into the ankle joint. The joint is viewed on a nearby television monitor.
  2. Makes repairs. Tiny instruments are used to repair damaged soft tissues, cartilage and/or bone.
  3. Ends surgery. Dissolvable sutures close soft tissue layers. Removeable sutures close the skin.

The ankle is placed in a splint or removable boot for immobilization and protection purposes. Total procedure time depends on the type of procedure. The CONA specialist tells the patient about how long their procedure will last during a consultation.

What conditions can ankle arthroscopy treat?

Ankle arthroscopy treats a variety of ankle injuries and conditions that were once only treated with nonsurgical or open incision treatment options:

  • Bone spurs
  • Cartilage tears
  • Ligament impingement
  • Loose bodies
  • Microfractures
  • Osteochondral lesions

These are effectively treated and patients return to normal activities with minimal to no restrictions.

What are ankle arthroscopy advantages?

Ankle arthroscopy is the ideal treatment option for patients who have an ankle injury or condition that does not respond to nonsurgical treatment but is not serious enough for open incision surgery. Key advantages include:

  • Less post-surgical pain
  • Minimal downtime
  • Quicker recovery

Patients who need physical therapy are able to start early in the recovery process and quickly regain ankle strength and flexibility.

What is ankle arthroscopy recovery like?

Procedure type determines the recovery process. CONA specialists explain every recovery process step in detail during a consultation.

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