Minimally Invasive Knee Surgery in Rocklin, California
In the treatment of knee damage, minimally invasive techniques are pursued whenever possible. These methods allow for shorter hospital stays and recovery periods than are associated with traditional open operations. Other benefits include reduced blood loss and decreased scarring, as minimally invasive procedures require smaller incisions and reduced cutting. Based on the type and severity of damage present, Dr. Gotham will determine whether such an approach is applicable for ensuring the best treatment results possible.
The disintegration of cartilage and bone, which results in increased friction and pressure within the knee, are common causes for joint pain and instability. Frequent sources of such damage include:
- Arthritis and associated inflammation
- Traumatic injury event or infection
- General wear-and-tear
Factors that influence a patient’s risk for developing such knee damage include: genetics, age, obesity, and the undertaking of high-impact activities (i.e. running or court-based sports). In addition, knee damage will often grow worse over time, with symptoms increasing in both frequency and severity. Any of the following symptoms may result from the presence of a progressive joint injury:
- Pain that radiates through the leg
- Inability to fully extend or bend the joint
- Difficulty in completing basic actions (such as standing or walking)
- Inflammation and/or redness of the joint area
If symptoms are near constant in nature and/or prevent the completion of everyday activities, orthopaedic intervention may be needed to provide for successful recovery.
In determining the level of medical care required, Dr. Gotham will examine both the patient’s general health and specific knee issues. In addition to the completion of strength and flexibility tests, a comprehensive symptom history will be recorded in an attempt to document the origin and progression of the injury present. Likewise, an x-ray, MRI, CT scan, or other diagnostic test may also be applied during the diagnostic process.
Once the level and type of knee injury present is identified, non-invasive treatment methods will likely be pursued for the relief of any symptoms. These methods will likely include, but may not be limited to:
- Pain and anti-inflammatory medications
- Steroid injections
- Use of bracing or crutches
- Exercise and/or weight reduction approaches
Depending on the outcome of these therapies, Dr. Gotham will determine whether surgical intervention is required. In cases of knee surgery, treatments may vary from basic cartilage repairs to total joint replacement. Whenever possible, a minimally invasive operation will be pursued.
In cases of cartilage or ACL surgery, arthroscopic techniques will likely be used to complete repair efforts. Arthroscopy involves the placement of 2-3 small incisions, through which a miniature camera and tools will be inserted. Through an in-room monitor, the surgical team will view a broadcast of the joint interior, while implementing corrective care.
If a minimally invasive total knee replacement is in order, a 4-6 inch incision will be utilized, rather than a traditional 8-10 inch incision. Through this opening, damaged bone and cartilage will be extracted and replaced with a prosthesis.
Frequently reported benefits of minimally invasive knee surgeries include:
- Lessened blood loss
- Reduced hospital stays and recovery times
- Reduced scarring
- Improved post-op joint motion
While the risks associated with minimally invasive knee surgery are minimal, any symptoms of concern should be reported to Dr. Gotham immediately. During the recovery period, it is integral to follow the prescribed approach for rehabilitation precisely.
Anti-inflammatory and pain medications will likely be recommended, as well as a combination of basic at-home exercises and professional physical therapy. Regular checkups will be scheduled, during which the medical team will provide ongoing recommendations for a gradual and safe return to physical activities.
Expertise in Knee Care: Dr. David Gotham
Dr. Gotham specializes in the minimally invasive treatment of knee damage. To learn more about his approach to diagnosis and care, schedule an appointment with his Rocklin, CA practice at 916.771.9555.