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Procedure: Rigid Endoscopy

Rigid endoscopes can be used to examine various internal organs and structures, especially joints and the external surfaces of organs within the abdominal cavity, such as the ovaries. The most frequently investigated joint is the knee, primarily because damage to it is common. Investigations using rigid endoscopes are often carried out under general anaesthesia. The endoscope is inserted through a small incision made in the skin. Further small incisions may be made for other instruments, such as forceps. The internal structures may be viewed on a monitor or through an eyepiece.

During the procedure

For endoscopy of the knee joint, you will be given a general anaesthetic. Small incisions are made on either side of the knee through which the endoscope and other instruments are passed.

Inside the knee

Rigid endoscope

A rigid endoscope is a straight, narrow metal tube with an eyepiece at one end to which a camera can be attached if necessary. A light source is connected to the endoscope and illuminates the structure or organ. Water and air can be pumped down the tube if necessary.

View

Endoscopic view of the knee joint

The cartilage in the knee joint is easily damaged. Damaged cartilage in this knee joint is seen through an endoscope.

From the 2010 revision of the Complete Home Medical Guide © Dorling Kindersley Limited.

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