Types of Orthopedic Elbow Surgery
Your elbow plays an important role in your daily life. You use it every time you pick up an object, scratch your head, throw a ball or shake hands at a meeting. If one of the elbows is injured or affected by a chronic condition, it can be difficult to complete these kinds of daily tasks.
Some forms of elbow pain can be treated with methods like physical therapy or medication. However, if these methods don’t work or if the pain is too severe, you may need elbow surgery.
Frequently performed types of elbow surgeryOrthopedic surgeons have several ways of treating elbow pain. Some of the most frequently performed surgeries of the elbow include:
- Arthroscopy — Arthroscopy is a minimally invasive form of orthopedic surgery that is performed on many joints in the body. The benefit of arthroscopy is it allows surgeons to see the operation with a camera attached to a small flexible tube. This means the surgeon can make tiny incisions and use small surgical instruments. Arthroscopy can be used for many different conditions like repairing tendon damage, removing bone fragments and loosening the joint capsule.
- Synovectomy — The synovium is a part of your elbow that lubricates the joint for smoother movement. Arthritis can cause inflammation of the synovium, which can wear down the cartilage and limit the use of your arm. A synovectomy hinders the progress of arthritis by removing the inflamed synovium to prevent it from damaging other parts of your elbow.
- Total elbow replacement — Arthritis or a traumatic injury can severely damage the bones, cartilage or soft tissues in your elbow. In some cases, the only way to regain use of the elbow is by replacing the joint with an artificial joint.
Is elbow surgery risky?Complications in elbow surgery are rare, but they can occur. These include:
- Blood loss
- Blood clotting
- Allergic reaction
- Ineffective artificial joint