Arthroscopy is a minimally invasive procedure that allows doctors to examine tissues inside the knee. During an arthroscopic procedure, a device known as an arthroscope is inserted into a small incision in the knee. Through this tube, a thin fiberoptic light, magnifying lens and tiny video camera are inserted, allowing the doctor to examine the joint in great detail. Arthroscopy may be a diagnostic procedure following a physical examination and imaging tests such as MRI or CT scans or X-rays. It may also be used as a method of treatment to repair small injuries in the knee.
Quadriceps Tendon Tear
The quadriceps tendon attaches the quadricep muscles to the patella bone in the lower, front part of the thigh, just above the knee. These muscles, tendons and bones work together to help straighten the knee. A quadriceps tear is a serious injury that can cause loss of knee function. The quadriceps tendon may become inflamed and eventually tear from athletic activity that strains the tendons, such as running, bicycling and dancing. Jumping activities, such as playing basketball, may put an athlete at a higher risk of a quadriceps tear, as landing puts immense strain on the quadriceps tendon. Quadriceps tendon tears can also be caused by falls or direct force to the front of the knee. Although a quadriceps tendon tear may occur at any age, it is more common in middle-aged individuals who are physically active.
A quadriceps tendon tear may be considered partial or complete. A partial tear has not completely disrupted the tissue of the quadriceps tendon and it may be stretched, but still in one piece. A complete tear results in tissue that has split into two pieces and the muscle is no longer attached to the knee cap. Treatment for a quadriceps tendon tear may vary based on the type of tear that has occurred.
Total Knee Arthroplasty
Patients with severe pain and stiffness that does not respond to conservative treatments or more moderate surgery may require total knee arthroplasty, commonly known as knee replacement, to relieve pain and restore function. Whereas in a healthy knee smooth cartilage cushions the connecting bone ends, when osteoarthritis develops, the resulting pain and stiffness that may require surgical intervention.
In a total knee arthroplasty, the damaged ends of the bones are removed and replaced with a prosthesis made of metal and plastic. These artificial parts allow the joint to move smoothly so the patient experiences pain relief and a better quality of life.