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Orthopaedic Procedures and Definitions

Orthopedics is the branch of medicine concerned with skeletal system of the body.

Arthritis- as we age, the cartilage covering bony surfaces wears down. This cartilage can become worn and roughened, interfering with smooth joint movement. During an arthroscopy, these roughened surfaces can be smoothed with power instruments.

Arthroscopy- a visual inspection of a joint through a lighted instrument. This is a common procedure done in surgery centers. Diagnostic and surgical interventions of the knee, shoulder,wrist and ankle can be performed.

Arthroscopically Aided Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) Repair – the ACL is one of 4 ligaments in the knee which serves to stabilize the knee joint. Of the 4 ligaments, the ACL is the most frequently injured ligament.”

Carpal Tunnel Release- release of a nerve of the wrist that has been entrapped. The entrapment can be caused by thickening of fluid, trauma or from a muscle. Symptoms include pain and numbness in the hand.

Chondroplasty- smoothing of a roughness on the inner surface of the patella (knee cap).

De Quervain's Tendinitis- the tendon either becomes inflamed or becomes too tight to allow normal movement of the thumb. Pain or a "knot" on the wrist near the thumb is a common symptom.

Ganglion Cyst- cysts that are firm, fluid-filled growths that can be found anywhere on the front or back of the hand. These cysts are often painful and can make movements difficult.

Ligament- any band of fibrous tissue connecting bone.

Ligament Tears- an injury, such as a twist or blow, can partially or completely tear ligaments that help stabilize the knee or other joints.

Meniscus Injury or Tear- the meniscus is a curved fibrous cartilage in the knee. The removal of a torn piece of meniscus can be performed with specially designed instruments. The surgeon also can repair a torn meniscus during arthroscopy, using sutures.

Plica- folding of tissue. Removal of plica can be performed during an arthroscopy.

Rotator Cuff – as we age, the rotator cuff tendons in the shoulder are subject to considerable wear and tear. Cuff tears are identified with the torn edges being sutured or reattached to the bone.

Synovial Membrane- a layer of membrane that secretes thick fluid to lubricate joints.

Trigger Finger- one type of tendonitis that occurs in the finger and thumb. It is often caused by repeatedly grasping an object. Surgically, the tendon covering is cut to enlarge the space to release the swollen tendon.

American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons