What to expect during an arthroscopy

In June, word spread that Robbie Rogers, a beloved defender for the LA Galaxy, would have to sit out of play for at least six weeks. His reason? An arthroscopic surgery on his ankle.

“I am really sorry I won’t be playing tomorrow at our pride game, I had surgery on my ankle and will be out for a little,” Rogers said on his Instagram account. “Last year was such an amazing moment to score my first LA Galaxy goal on that night and I’m really sad I won’t be able to repeat that.”

Rogers, who has played with the Galaxy for multiple seasons, has started or appeared in several games this season, which means that the Major League Soccer team will be temporarily losing key player and fans will have to watch for autograph opportunities instead of goals.

For athletes like Rogers, movement is essential to play. But all that running, kicking, maneuvering and defending can get rough and lead to injuries. And these incidents aren’t just a “West Cost thing.” Ankle arthroscopies are common because they are helpful for treating everything from scar tissue and bone spurs to arthritis and talus lesions.

So what can you expect if you are going to have an arthroscopy? When compared to more complex and dated ankle procedures, an arthroscopy has many perks. First, understand that the procedure will be as minimally invasive as possible because an arthroscopy is designed for diagnosing and treating injuries without making large incisions. And although there might be some pressure on your ankle, the procedure is relatively painless. You will be under general anesthesia and the operation should only take  30 to 45 minutes. While you’re under, we’ll place small incisions in your ankle to be able to access the joint. Advancements in technology now allow us to insert a tiny camera, called an arthroscope, directly into an incision and place small surgical tools into the other openings. This allows us to view the ankle joint on a computer screen and move the instruments as needed to repair damages.

Another major benefit of an arthroscopy is that you won’t have a hospital stay! The nature of the procedure means that you will be out of the clinic the same day and quickly on the way to recovery. Still, like Rogers knows, it takes time to heal after an arthroscopy and you will have to avoid exercise and other strenuous actions for at least six weeks. If you’re eager to get back in the game, that might seem like an eternity, but the timing is actually shorter than with other procedures and the method causes less bleeding and scarring. Of course, the factor that really makes it worth the time is a life with less chronic pain and a better understanding of your body–and that’s hard to beat!

We know that injuries and surgery are never fun, but advanced methods like an arthroscopy can help you heal without altering your agenda too much. Call today for more information.