Wrist arthroscopy is often performed following a patient-reported injury or they develop a feeling of pain, clicking or swelling – all of which may be indicative of an internal issue within the wrist.
“By providing a magnified view of all of the bones, joints and soft tissues found in the wrist, we’re able to use the technology as a diagnostic procedure for wrist pathology and as a minimally invasive alternative for fracture fixation, soft tissue debridement, repairs of torn cartilage and ligament reconstruction,” says Dr. Riggenbach. “It’s really one of the best ways we have currently to assess the ligaments, cartilage and bone found in the wrist.”
Dr. Riggenbach sees many wrist patients that have been referred from their primary care physicians after being diagnosed with persistent acute or chronic wrist pain. If the patient has failed the conservative measures of healing, such as splinting or NSAID’s, or if the patient is complaining of wrist instability or ulnar sided wrist pain, he says it may also be time to refer them to a hand and upper extremity specialist for further testing.
“Any patient is eligible for a wrist arthroscopy; however, it must be carefully considered in those patients with previous operations and major anatomic alterations,” he adds.