Arthroscopy has given us the ability to treat problems of joints more successfully. Patients experience less pain and heal faster through its use. It is used both as a diagnostic aid and to perform surgery. The use of arthroscopy has been shown to decrease the progression of arthritis compared to more traditional approaches.
We use arthroscopy to confirm suspected diagnoses such as elbow dysplasia, fragmented medial coronoid processes, and osteochondrosis (OCD) lesions. There are special graspers designed to remove fragments and cartilage flaps. We also have high-speed burrs which are used to clean up joints.
Fragmented medial coronoid processes are seen in many different animals. The exact cause is unknown but the fragment left untreated will lead to severe degenerative joint disease. When caught and treated early, cartilage is spared and many dogs are improved and live normal lives.