What is knee arthroscopy ?

Knee arthroscopy is a minimally invasive technique that is used to treat a number of issues within the knee joint using a tiny camera called an arthroscope. The procedure is conducted via small incisions through which the arthroscope and other instruments needed are passed.

Why you might need a knee arthroscopy?

Knee arthroscopies are used to evaluate and treat many issues. These may include: a torn meniscus, torn surface cartilage, removal of loose bodies and cysts, reconstruction of the anterior cruciate ligament, patello-femoral disorders and cleaning out infection.

The procedure

Prior to surgery, your anaesthetist will discuss your options for anaesthesia. Most patients would have a general anaesthetic.



Your surgeon will make small incisions around the knee, one on the outer side for the arthroscope and another on the insider side of the knee for the examination instruments. Saline or salt water will then be pumped in to expand the knee to assist with viewing the joint. The surgeon will be able to view the affected area(s) on a screen. Once the issue is located, other operational tools may be inserted to correct the problem. Once the surgery is completed, the joint is drained of excess fluid and the incisions are closed.


Complications are uncommon. These include delayed healing of the entry sites to the knee and infection.


As the surgery is not majorly invasive there are fewer restrictions for your recovery period. You will likely go home on the same day as the procedure.


For home treatment, you should keep your leg elevated and ice it for a day or two to bring the swelling down and assist in reducing pain. A tailored exercise program will help with recovery and to restore your knee to a full range of motion and strength.