This procedure involves inserting a small telescope (arthroscope) with an in-built light source and a camera into the wrist joint via a very small incision (keyhole surgery).This allows the surgeon to view the inside of the joint via a television monitor in theatre. Specially-designed instruments can then be inserted through other small incisions, providing the ability to treat a wide range of conditions.
The telescope used is smaller than that used for arthroscopy of the shoulder or knee, but still provides an excellent view of the inside of the wrist joint.
Who needs it?
Is a wrist arthroscopy painful?
The (3 or 4) small incisions are closed with steristrips, and a supportive dressing is applied.
Local anaesthetic is injected into the wrist at the end of the operation which means that there should be little pain for the first few hours. Once this wears off, however, there may be some discomfort for the first few days. Simple painkillers may be required to control this.
How long does it take to recover from wrist arthroscopy?
How much you are allowed to do will be determined by how quickly the wrist recovers from the surgery, and what the underlying problem was, and how successfully this has been treated. Commonly, it will take between 6-12 weeks to fully recover.