Arthroscopy is a minimally invasive diagnostic and treatment procedure used for conditions affecting a joint, most commonly the knee, shoulder, elbow, ankle, hip, and wrist. Arthroscopy involves, small surgical cuts in the skin while the patient is under anesthesia (local, spinal, or general), after which a salt water solution is usually pumped into joint to expand the space and allow room for the insertion of a small, flexible tube (arthroscope) into the joint. Tiny cameras and surgical tools attached to the arthroscope allow the surgeon to view the internal structures on a monitor and repair any damage to the joint. The conditions most frequently found with arthroscopy include inflammation (including the lining of the synovium in the knee, shoulder, elbow, wrist, or ankle); traumatic injury, including rotator cuff tendon tears of the shoulder, tears of the meniscus (cartilage) and anterior cruciate ligament of the knee, and carpal tunnel syndrome of the wrist; and loose bone and/or cartilage, particularly in the knee, shoulder, elbow, ankle, or wrist. When the procedure is complete, the saline is drained from the joint and the surgeon closes the incisions with sutures and covers them with a dressing.
Patients from across the nation trust their orthopaedic care to the specialists at UAB Medicine, where they benefit from the evidence-based care delivered by nationally known specialists in a compassionate environment. Our faculty physicians perform a wide array of complex and minimally invasive procedures and treatments, from complete hip replacements and bone cancer screenings to scoliosis correction and repair of sports-related injuries.
Clinics are maintained at the convenient UAB Hospital-Highlands, which offers easy access and free parking.
UAB Orthopaedics is comprised of physicians focused on specific bone and joint conditions of the hands, back, knees, hips, and feet. Physicians specializing in pediatric orthopaedics, musculoskeletal oncology, and sports medicine complete our comprehensive group of specialists. Our pledge is to work with you to determine the best course of care for your individual needs, and we keep you informed every step of the way. Our access to a wide variety of UAB Medicine specialists in other areas ensures that you will receive outstanding, experienced care.
Specialists within UAB Orthopaedics are highly skilled experts in their areas. Our physicians receive additional training in their area of specialty and stay up to date on the latest advances through professional medical societies such as the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. Because our physicians take leadership roles in professional medical societies and author textbooks that help mold tomorrow’s orthopaedic physicians, they are nationally and internationally renowned for their care.
UAB is an active participant in research and clinical trials. We encourage you to speak to your physician about research and clinical trial options and browse the link below for more information.View Clinical Trials
UAB Hospital first in Alabama to offer first-of-its-kind dissolving heart stent
The interventional cardiology team at UAB Hospital recently added to its longstanding reputation as a pioneer in the development and implementation of stents by becoming the first in Alabama to offer patients with coronary artery disease a new treatment option that disappears over time.
On July 20, Massoud Leesar, M.D., a professor in UAB’s Division of Cardiovascular Disease, implanted a patient with the world’s first FDA-approved dissolving heart stent for the first time in Alabama. The Absorb bioresorbable vascular coronary stent is a major advance in the treatment of coronary heart disease, which is responsible for about 370,000 deaths each year in the United States, according to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. This type of stent has been in the making for nearly 15 years.
While stents are traditionally made of metal, the Absorb stent is made of a naturally dissolving material called polylactide, similar to dissolving stitches or sutures.
“Since the Absorb stent gradually dissolves, this may be a safer long-term option for patients because metal stents can clot and occlude the artery,” Leesar said.
The stent is placed into the artery on a balloon at the end of a thin flexible tube, much like the procedure used to place bare metal and drug eluting coronary stents. It is then expanded by inflating the balloon that pushes the plaque against the artery wall to enable greater blood flow. The balloon is removed, leaving the Absorb stent to slowly release medication to the diseased area. With blood flow restored, the stent begins dissolving.
After Absorb dissolves, it allows the artery to pulse and flex naturally. It may also reduce the risk of future blockages that occur with metallic stents, and makes it easier for doctors to offer additional interventions in the future if necessary. During the dissolving period, Absorb metabolizes into water and carbon dioxide, two elements that occur naturally in the body. All that remain in the artery are two pairs of tiny metallic markers that enable a physician to see where the device was placed. After three years, the device is completely dissolved and the vessel can remain open and pulsate on its own.
Calvin Burnett of Albertville, Alabama, is the first patient in the state to receive the new Absorb stent. After Burnett was diagnosed with rectal cancer in September 2015, his oncologist recommended he see a cardiologist at UAB following complaints of tightness in his chest.
“I’ve always been kind of physically active, so this kind of threw me for a loop,” Burnett said.
Two days after his stress test, an Absorb stent was placed. Burnett says he is grateful that medicine has come so far.
“I think this is such a great thing,” he said. “I’m looking forward to getting back to riding horses.”
Burnett says he could not imagine having his procedure done anywhere other than at UAB.
To ensure optimal patient selection and implant technique, UAB’s interventional cardiology team underwent extensive training on the new device.
“One of the advantages of this new stent is that the risk of a metal stent’s suddenly clotting is a major issue long-term,” Leesar said. “Since the new stent dissolves over time, this risk can be eliminated, and the vessel has the potential to be open more than to before with the stent.”
Currently, patients who receive the new dissolving stent will have to meet certain criteria. Leesar suggests patients talk with their cardiologists to see if they meet those criteria, and to learn more about the Absorb stent and its capabilities.
Source: UAB News