Arthroscopy of the right knee

Operation Duration
30 Min - 2 Hours
Hospital Stay
1 Day
Total Stay
2 Day
Approximate Recovery
2-6 Months

Knee arthroscopy is a surgical procedure that uses a tiny camera to look inside your knee. Small incisions are made to insert the camera and surgical tools.

Anesthesia Options
  1. Local Anesthesia: Pain medicine numbs your knee. You may also receive medication to relax you while remaining awake.
  2. Spinal Anesthesia: Also called regional anesthesia, pain medicine is injected into your spine. You will be awake but won't feel anything below your waist.
  3. General Anesthesia: You will be asleep and pain-free.
  4. Regional Nerve Block: Pain medicine is injected around the nerve in your groin or leg. You will be asleep and need less general anesthesia.

A device may be placed around your thigh to control bleeding. The surgeon will make 2-3 small cuts around your knee and pump fluid (saline) to inflate it. A narrow tube with a camera is inserted through one cut, showing the inside of your knee on a video monitor. The surgeon uses other small tools through the other cuts to fix or remove the problem.At the end of surgery, the saline is drained, cuts are closed with sutures, and a dressing is applied. Surgeons often take pictures of the procedure, which you can view afterward.

Reasons for the Procedure

Arthroscopy may be recommended for:
  • Torn meniscus
  • Torn or damaged ACL/PCL
  • Inflamed or damaged joint lining (synovium)
  • Misaligned kneecap (patella)
  • Broken cartilage pieces in the knee
  • Removal of a Baker cyst
  • Repair of cartilage defects
  • Certain knee fractures


Risks include:
  • Allergic reactions to medicines
  • Breathing problems
  • Bleeding
  • Infection
Specific risks of knee arthroscopy:
  • Bleeding into the knee joint
  • Damage to knee cartilage, meniscus, or ligaments
  • Blood clot in the leg
  • Injury to a blood vessel or nerve
  • Infection in the knee joint
  • Knee stiffness

Before the Procedure

Inform your healthcare provider of all medications you are taking. Two weeks before surgery, you may need to stop taking blood-thinning medications. Tell your provider about alcohol use and smoking, as smoking can slow healing and increase complications. Report any illnesses before surgery.
On the Day of Surgery
  • Do not eat or drink anything for 6-12 hours before the procedure.
  • Take prescribed medications with a small sip of water.
  • Arrive at the hospital as instructed.

After the Procedure

You will have an ace bandage on your knee. Most people go home the same day. Follow your provider’s instructions for exercises and possibly physical therapy.

Outlook (Prognosis)

Recovery depends on the problem treated. Simple procedures have faster recovery times. Crutches may be needed initially. Pain medication may be prescribed. Complex procedures may require longer recovery, and full recovery could take several months to a year. If you have arthritis, symptoms may persist despite the surgery.


You can contact us for information about the surgery and treatment processes and to make an appointment, and you can get information about all the details.