Elbow arthritis develops when healthy joint cartilage becomes damaged through overuse, age-related degeneration, chronic inflammation, or an injury such as a fracture or dislocation. The condition can be extremely painful and interfere with daily tasks that involve bending the arm. Arthroscopic treatment may be considered if elbow arthritis does not respond sufficiently to conservative therapies, such as rest, physical therapy, medications, and corticosteroid injections.
Which Types of Elbow Arthritis Can Be Treated With Arthroscopy?
To provide pain relief and improve joint range of motion, elbow arthroscopy may be performed to address early-stage rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis of the elbow.
What Does Elbow Arthroscopy Involve?
Similar to shoulder arthroscopy, elbow arthroscopy is performed through several small incisions over the elbow joint. After inserting a tiny camera and specialized surgical instruments through these portals, the surgeon can:
- Remove an inflamed synovium
- Shave down bone spurs
- Remove loose bodies floating in the elbow joint
- Remove scar tissue from the elbow joint
In comparison to traditional open surgery, which involves large incisions and muscle dissection, elbow arthroscopy is much less invasive. As such, it usually results in less postoperative pain and a faster recovery.
Consult With a Respected Surgeon
Christopher C. Schmidt, MD, is a board-certified orthopaedic surgeon who performs elbow arthroscopy in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Due in part to his years of experience and mastery of complex elbow surgery techniques, Dr. Schmidt is widely regarded as one of the best elbow surgeons in the area.
Your Premiere Choice for Shoulder & Elbow Surgery