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Reasons for Procedure
- Excess bleeding
- Blood clots
- Chronic weakness in knee joint
- Worsening or unchanged pain
- Poor nutrition
- History of blood clots
- Long-term illness
- Use of certain medications
What to Expect
Prior to Procedure
- Aspirin and other anti-inflammatory drugs
- Blood-thinning drugs, such as warfarin
- Anti-platelet drugs, such as clopidogrel
- Local—the area around the knee will be numbed
- Spinal—your lower body will be numbed from an injection into the back
- General anesthesia—you will be asleep
Description of the Procedure
How Long Will It Take?
How Much Will It Hurt?
- Pain medication
- Antibiotics to prevent infection
- Medication that prevents blood clots
- Use compression and ice for 48-72 hours after surgery. This will help reduce swelling.
- Elevate legs often while resting in bed.
- Use crutches or knee splint as directed by your doctor.
- Do exercises as recommended. You may start with simple thigh muscle exercises the day after surgery. More strengthening exercises will be added later.
- Take pain medications and all other prescribed medications as recommended by your doctor.
- Ask your doctor about when it is safe to shower, bathe, or soak in water.
- Be sure to follow your doctor’s instructions.
Call Your Doctor
- Signs of infection, including fever and chills
- Redness, swelling, increasing pain, excessive bleeding, or discharge from the incision site
- Pain, redness, or swelling in either calf
- Pain that you cannot control with the medications you have been given
- Nausea and vomiting
- Swollen, discolored, or cold toes
- Cough, shortness of breath, or chest pain
- New or worsening symptoms
American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons http://orthoinfo.org
American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine http://www.sportsmed.org
Canadian Orthopaedic Association http://www.coa-aco.org
Canadian Orthopaedic Foundation http://www.canorth.org
American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons website. Available at: http://www.aaos.org.
Arthroscopy. John Hopkins Medicine website. Available at: http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/healthlibrary/test%5Fprocedures/orthopaedic/arthroscopy%5Fprocedure%5F92,P07676/. Accessed May 3, 2013.
Knee arthroscopy. American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons website. Available at: http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=A00299. Updated March 2010. Accessed May 3, 2013.
Meniscus tears. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed/what.php. Updated March 24, 2013. Accessed May 3, 2013.
- Reviewer: John C. Keel, MD
- Review Date: 03/2013 -
- Update Date: 03/01/2013 -