Knee arthroscopy is a diagnostic procedure wherein a small device called arthroscope is used for examining the internal structures of the knee joint. Arthroscopic knee surgery refers to a surgical procedure wherein the internal structures are examined with the help of an arthroscope and also repaired at the same time. How much does arthroscopic knee surgical operation cost? Scroll down to find out about the circumstances under which this surgery is performed.
When is Arthroscopic Knee Surgery Recommended?
The knee joint is a complex joint. It comprises the thigh bone (femur), shin bone (tibia), outer shin bone (fibula) and kneecap (patella). Crescent-shaped menisci or cartilage are located on the inner and outer edges of the tibia. These prevent the thigh bone and shin bone from rubbing against each other. A network of ligaments and muscles also help in maintaining the stability of the knee joint.
If any of these structures of the knee joint get damaged due to traumatic injuries or repetitive strain injuries, one may suffer from knee problems such as knee fractures or a dislocated knee. Under these circumstances, one is most likely to suffer from knee pain. The range of motion of the knee would also be adversely affected. Reduced knee stability would consequently result in reduced mobility.
At times, knee could even become unstable due to degenerative joint disorders. Knee arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, gout or joint infections are some of the medical conditions that may adversely affect the knee stability. If conservative treatment doesn't help in alleviating the symptoms, and the patient's quality of life is getting affected due to these conditions, doctors may recommend a surgery. Since the risk of infection, bleeding and other complications is higher in case of an open surgery, doctors may recommend the minimally-invasive arthroscopic knee surgery.
Arthroscopic Knee Surgery Procedure
Arthroscopic knee surgery is a minimally-invasive procedure that involves the use of an arthroscope. Fluids, antibiotics or other drugs may need to be administered intravenously. The surgery begins only after the administration of anesthesia. Unlike an open knee surgery, wherein a large-sized incision is made to make the repairs, only a few small-sized incisions are made in this type of knee surgery.
An arthroscope, which is a small tube that consists of optical fibers and lenses, is inserted through one of the small incisions made on the knee. Since a mini-camera is attached to this device, the interiors can be viewed on a video monitor. These visuals guide the surgeons as they remove the damaged tissues and make the necessary repairs. Once the repairs are made, the arthroscope is taken out and incisions are sutured. This is followed by an application of a sterile dressing.
Cost of Arthroscopic Knee Surgery
So, how much would arthroscopic knee surgery cost? Well, the total cost of this knee surgery may vary depending on the region where the hospital is located. The cost of this surgery without insurance could range from $7,000 to $15,000. The average cost could even go higher if any complications develop. Basically, the hospitalization charges and fees of the surgeon form a substantial part of the cost of the surgery.
Usually the patient is discharged the same day and thus, one may not have to shell out a lot of money as hospital stay charges. The cost also includes anesthesia charges along with expenses incurred on the drugs and other diagnostic procedures. Post surgery, one may have to take certain drugs and follow certain aftercare measures. One may recover from the surgery within a month, provided the guidelines given by the surgeon are complied with. There is a need to make follow-up visits so as to monitor the healing process. One may also have to go for physiotherapy sessions in order to recover the normal range of motion of the knee.
Since the cost of this surgery is quite high, it would be better to ensure that this surgery is covered under the health insurance plan one has opted for. Those who don't have a medical insurance, must consult the doctor about the total cost of this surgery along with the expenses that may be made post surgery.