Athletes benefit from noninvasive joint surgery

SRO orthopaedic surgeon Dr. Gary Stein offers insight into arthroscopic surgery for joints

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Athletes benefit from noninvasive joint surgery

In an arthroscopic surgery review conducted by the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) it was discovered that the vast majority (96 percent) of athletic runners returned to actively participate in their sport within nine months of undergoing arthroscopic surgery. These extremely favorable results are due to the use of arthroscopic surgery – the most minimally invasive orthopaedic surgery available on the scene today.

Arthroscopic surgery is seen as an extremely valuable device for orthopaedic patients including high performance athletes. It is easier on the patient when compared to more traditional or “open” surgeries, and it gives patients the best opportunity to heal quickly and resume activities with less downtime.

What is Arthroscopy?

Arthroscopy, or arthroscopic surgery, is a surgical technique that makes it possible for a surgeon to examine a joint visually with the aid of a small fiberoptic camera called an arthroscope, an instrument that resembles a long tube and works like a miniature camera. During an arthroscopic procedure, the arthroscope is inserted into the joint through a small incision. During the procedure images from the camera are projected onto a video monitor, providing a clear picture of the joint and any potential problems.

This case review highlights the importance of arthroscopic surgery, and it reflects the results orthopaedic surgeons characteristically see from patients as they recover from minimally invasive surgeries of all types. Surgeons at Santa Rosa Orthopaedics routinely perform arthroscopic surgery for a variety of purposes with excellent outcomes. Arthroscopic surgery is performed for many medical conditions and most frequently on larger joints, such as the knee or shoulder. It can also be done on the ankle, elbow, and wrist. Depending on the type of procedure, most patients are able to undergo arthroscopic surgery on an outpatient basis and are back home just hours after the surgery. Recovery time is much faster than open joint surgery.

No matter what the focus of the surgery, it generally takes 4 to 6 weeks for the joint to recover following arthroscopic surgery. Most patients go back to work or resume daily activities within just a few days. Any patient who enjoys an athletic lifestyle will also benefit from a rehabilitation program following surgery to help speed recovery and protect future joint function – as the patients in these cases likely participated in as well.

As fiber optic technology continues to improve and new techniques are developed, the use of arthroscopy will continue to expand in the future. But for now, in many cases offering less invasive surgery that results in a quicker recovery is a good option.


SRO Sports Medicine Center

North Bay’s Leading Sports Medicine Center

From arthroscopic procedures to knee and hip surgery to comprehensive physical therapy, SRO’s Sports Medicine Specialists are up-to-date on the latest innovations in sports medicine, to ensure your treatment is ideal and appropriate for your injury.

In its efforts to bring the best outcomes to patients, Santa Rosa Orthopaedics (SRO) has set the model for exceptional orthopedic care for over 60 years. SRO offers patients in-house diagnostic imaging, rehabilitation, sports injury prevention, as well as advanced surgical treatments in joint replacement, sports medicine, trauma care, hand, foot and ankle, neck and spine care as well as general orthopedic surgery. For an appointment call 707-546-1922.

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