Arthroscopy complications

What complications can arthroscopy have?

Possible complications:
Basically it is Arthroscopy associated with only a low life-threatening risk. There have been isolated reports of deaths from gas embolism or from a septic shock after infection were caused. Overall that is Pulmonary embolism the leading cause of death after an arthroscopy.

The risk of a Arthroscopy to die is 1: 9000 and is comparable with the risk associated with the administration of X-ray contrast medium (1: 10,000). A study from North America indicates an even lower risk (1: 25,000 to 1: 100,000).

In addition to life-threatening complications, there are a number of serious and minor complications that occur during or after arthroscopic surgery may occur.

The following table shows possible complications during a Arthroscopy at a glance:

Complications during surgery

  • Pressure damage sagging on the leg that is not to be operated on incorrect storage technology
  • Injuries to cutaneous nerves with subsequent sensitivity disorders (Emotional disorder) when creating the entrances, especially in the front Tibia area
  • Injuries to vessels that bleed again from the puncture canals
  • Broken instrument due to unsuitable instruments or when operating in areas of the joint that are difficult to access
    • cartilage- or Meniscal injuries through the use of instruments (especially with Local anesthesia)
    • Removal of cut parts of the meniscus from the grasping forceps
      • Burns on the skin when using electric knives with non-intact insulation
      • Rare: Injury to the knee artery with subsequent Amputation of the leg
      • Persistent swelling due to the accumulation of flushing fluid in the (subcutaneous) tissue under the skin, which is usually broken down by itself
      • Inner ligament tear by opening the inside (medial) Joint section when using a leg holder, which is harmless as it heals spontaneously.
      • Sensory disorders (Emotional disorder) in the course of the sciatic nerve on the back of the thigh or weakness of the Extensor muscles of the thigh (Quadriceps) by putting on a Tourniquet cuff

Appointment with ?

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My name is dr. Nicolas Gumpert. I am a specialist in orthopedics and the founder of .
Various television programs and print media report regularly about my work. On HR television you can see me every 6 weeks live on "Hallo Hessen".
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In order to be able to treat successfully in orthopedics, a thorough examination, diagnosis and a medical history are required.
In our very economic world in particular, there is too little time to thoroughly grasp the complex diseases of orthopedics and thus initiate targeted treatment.
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Which therapy achieves the best results in the long term can only be determined after looking at all of the information (Examination, X-ray, ultrasound, MRI, etc.) be assessed.

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Complications after arthroscopic surgery from the patient's perspective

After the operation, pus or bloody accumulations of fluid in the joint (effusion) come. Further complications can be wound infections and joint inflammation caused by bacteria (septic arthritis), a deep one Leg vein thrombosis or - rarely - one Pulmonary embolism be. There is little reliable information about the frequency of the mentioned and possibly other complications.