Effects of Arthroscopy Surgery

Arthroscopy surgery is a commonly performed surgery that helps to treat knee problems. The main difference from normal open surgery is that small incisions are made to allow a small camera and surgical devices to be placed at the knee joint. Since only small incisions are made, the recovery time will be shorter and there will be less potential complications as compared to open surgery. However as with all surgery, there are some effects after the surgery that are due to the surgery itself.

Decreased range of motion

After surgery, some patients may experience a decreased range of motion for their knee. This decrease in range of motion can be attributed to both the injury itself as well as the trauma during the surgery. Over time and physical therapy, the full range of motion can be obtained. However in severe and rare cases, patients may experienced stiffness in their knee for the rest of their lives.

Blood clots

There is always a possibility that blood clots will form at the surgical site after surgery. This is due to the nature of the anaesthesia, causing the surgical area to be numb and devoid of blood. This can result in blood pooling in the bottom half of the body and result in blood clots after the surgery.

Infection

Although all the surgical instruments are sterile, there is still a low risk of infection in patients due to different reasons such as poor surgical techniques and inadequate sterilisation of medical personnel. Some pre-existing conditions of the patients can also increase the risk of infection such as diabetes. Infection can cause serious problems in patients and patients will need to consume antibiotics orally to be cured.

Further injuries due to surgery

The entire surgery will be carried out in a careful and meticulous way. However, since arthroscopy surgery involves the use of surgical instruments passing through small incisions in the knee, some further damages or injuries to the knee could happen when trying to pass the instruments through. In unfortunate scenarios, the surrounding tissues and nerves could also be accidentally injured. However, this is a very rare thing to happen.

Hemarthrosis

Hemarthrosis is a rare effect of arthroscopy surgery. It is a collection of blood at the surgical site which can cause pain if there is a significant amount of blood. It will also lead to inflammation and infection.

Above are some of the effects of arthroscopy surgery. Overall, it is a rather safe surgical method but it depends on the quality of the surgeon you choose as most of it is due to poor surgical techniques.

Difference Between Chiropractor and Orthopaedic Doctors

An unfortunate accident occurred one day while you were playing contact sports and that left you with a knee injury. You know that you need to consult a medical professional for this injury and you start to evaluate the options available. Should you go to an Orthopaedic doctor or should you go to a Chiropractor? Each has its own advantages. For some cases, chiropractic sports are great to treat certain injuries while some injuries fall outside the jurisdiction of chiropractic and only orthopaedic surgery can treat them.

Who are Chiropractors and how do they treat an injury? First of all, Chiropractors are not medical doctors and they do not prescribe medications. Chiropractors believe in hands on and alternative treatment instead of surgery. They believe that the body is able to heal on its own. For example, if mobility to a certain part of the body is observed, they will manipulate that particular part to regain mobility. A visit to a Chiropractor usually cost a lot lesser than a visit to an Orthopaedic doctor. Some chiropractors even make the first consultation complimentary. Not only that, you are also able to fix an appointment at an earlier date as compared to an appointment with an Orthopaedic doctor. However, multiple visits to Chiropractors are required to be able to see results and in the long term, it may cost more than a visit to the latter.

Orthopaedic doctors on the other hand are medical doctors. They specialise in the diagnosis and treatment of our musculoskeletal system. Many people have the idea that orthopaedic doctors are doctors who will recommend surgery for everything, from a torn meniscus to a dislocated bone. This is not true. Orthopaedic doctors will often only recommend surgery when all other available options are exhausted. If the injury can be treated with physical therapy, they will recommend that unless patients insist on surgery in the first place. Orthopaedic doctors will make use of medical technologies such as X-Rays and MRI scans to tell the patient what exactly is wrong with their body. They are also able to prescribe pain relief medications be it orally or via injections, something that Chiropractors are not able to.

Deciding on a visit either to a Chiropractor or an Orthopaedic doctor is purely the decision of the patient. As a patient, you need to know what type of injury you have suffered and make your decision based on that. Different people prefer different things and be sure to know what results you really want.

The First 3 Months After Your Knee Replacement Surgery

During your knee replacement surgery, you will be under general anaesthesia and there will be an incision made on your knee to allow surgical tools to move in and out of the knee. Once the damaged portions of the knee are removed and the artificial joints placed into the knee and attached using adhesive materials, the knee will be sutured together and you will be pushed to the recovery room.

The recovery period starts immediately after the surgery and even though you are still feeling the effects of the anaesthesia, you will be encouraged to start moving your knee. High chance are that you have not used the knee for physical activities for quite some time due to the pain which led to you undergoing the knee replacement surgery. As a result, the muscles are weak and you need to start building up and strengthen the muscles to allow better control of your new joint. A physical therapist will prescribe some physical therapy exercises for you to do yourself at home. You will be able to get discharged around 3 days after surgery and during this period, you will start to learn how to move around with the help of crutches until your knee is able to take your body weight. Once the knee is strengthened and is able to bear weight, you can slowly reduce your dependency on your crutches.

The first 3 months post surgery is a risky period as the replacement joint is still not fully attached to the surrounding muscles and tissues firmly. You knee can often give way so make sure you keep doing strengthening exercises to strengthen the region. You will also feel pain in the knees rather often during this period and this is perfectly normal. You will be prescribed painkillers but do not rely totally on the painkillers. If you notice any abnormal swelling or abnormal pain in the knee, make sure you go back to your surgeon for a check. Although the operating theatre is sterile, infection can still happen but this is rare. If you see any infection in the site of the incision, you need to go back to your surgeon as well. You should aim to regain your knee’s full range of motion within this 3 months and this will help to prevent any scar tissues from building up or arthrofibrosis.

The first 3 months post surgery is totally about recovery and regaining back the functions of your knees. It is probably the toughest part of the whole surgery process and you will feel extremely useless. However it is the most important part and a bad recovery can lead to even more problems in future.

Tennis Elbow Exercise

Tennis elbow exercises are useful to smoothen the pain inflicted by tennis elbow injury. This exercise for tennis elbow is to eliminate the root of weak muscles problem in the forearm.This workout can also act as a good follow-up healing exercise for individuals who have undergone a tennis elbow surgery. Never belittle the benefits of these workouts as it can greatly help in preventing tennis elbow problem from arising.

1) Tennis elbow exercises using a hammer

The purpose of this hammer exercise is for forearm pronation and supination strengthening.

Pronation and Supination 500x284

 

Pronation: It is the rotation of the forearm at the radioulnar joint, performed by the pronator quadratus and pronator teres muscle. In the natural anatomical position, pronation refers to the palms facing downwards when the body is lying on its back; for example during an autopsy.

Supination: Similarly the rotation of the forearm is at the radioulnar joint, however performed by the Biceps Brachii and the Supinator Muscle. Supination is the opposite of pronation, referring to the palms facing upwards in a natural anatomical position.

Forearm Pronation and supination strengthening

Using this method of exercise will require you to have an object that has a huge mass on one end, such as a hammer for the start. This can be easily be replaced by having a tennis racket.

First, you will need to place your forearm on a flat surface with your hands facing up. There should not be anything in between your hand and the floor. Next, grab the object (hammer) at the handle, such that the head of the hammer is held at the end of your hand.

With the hammer in your hand, move your arm in a 180-degree motion similar to how a windscreen wiper operates. Start moving the hammer from the right over your hand, and then down to the left.

However, this exercise is subjective to individual, if you feel that your forearm muscles are not working, you may need to find a heavier item to replace the hammer or object you’re holding.

2) Rubber Band Exercise

Finger extension: Straightening of the joint resulting in an increase of angle; moving the distal two segments of the fingers away from the base of the fingers.

finger extensions

Using this form of exercise requires you to have a rubber band at your fingertips. It would be good to keep one around your wrist, so that you can perform this easy exercise whenever you feel like it.

All your fingers and thumb should support the rubber band. Next slowly widen your fingers such that the rubber band is being stretched. Practice 10-15 times per set. You are encouraged to do 3 sets a day while going through this rehabilitation process. While doing this exercise, you should feel your upper forearm being stretched. Alternatively, you may choose to hold onto the stretched position for 3 seconds before relaxing. Should the resistance be insufficient, you may also add additional rubber bands or change into a thicker one.

3) Weighted Wrist Exercise

The purpose of this exercise is for strengthening via Wrist Extension and Wrist Flexion.

Wrist Extension: Refers to the straightening of the joint resulting in an increase of angle; moving the back of the hand toward the back of the forearm. The muscles that are responsible for wrist extension include: Extensor Carpi Radialis Longus, Extensor Carpi Radialis Brevis and Extensor Carpi Ulnaris.

Wrist Extension

In this exercise, you will need a weight, preferably a dumbbell between 1kg – 5kg, depending on your rehabilitation stage, injury and ability. Starting from the position similar to the elbow exercise, place your forearm on a flat surface and if possible extend your wrist beyond the edge of the surface, such that it isolates movements to your wrist.

Holding onto the weight, raise up your hand at the wrist joint slowly – concentric concentration, before lowering it slowly again – eccentric concentration.

Wrist Flexion: Refers to the bending of joint resulting in the decrease of angle; moving the palm of the hand toward the forearm. The muscles involved are Flexor Carpi Radialis and Flexor Carpi Ulnaris.

Wrist Flexion

 

In this exercise, likewise, the palm is in supine position holds onto the weight. Bend the wrist upwards slowly (concentric) and lower it down again slowly (eccentric).

Hope these few exercises are of great assistance in the rehabilitation for your elbow injury.