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Conditions & Treatments

Here at Snibbe Orthopedics, we are advocates for educating our patients about your condition and the various treatment options available to you. Please click on the conditions below for detailed explanations and the courses of treatment for each.

This information can assist in diagnosing your orthopedic issue. However, please keep in mind that this information is intended for educational purposes only. In order to fully assess your injury, a comprehensive history and physical exam must be performed by Dr. Snibbe. We encourage you to come into our office to meet with Dr. Snibbe and discuss all available treatment options together.

Dr. Snibbe and his team want you to have a thorough understanding of the surgery you are having as well as the steps you will go through before, during, and after surgery. Thus, we have put together this information, which you can use at any point to ensure a smooth progression through your surgical care. You will find answers to the most commonly asked questions for each procedure, as well as a timeline for your recovery.

Total Knee Arthroplasty

In a total knee replacement, the damaged cartilage and bone will be removed from your knee joint. A new metal surface will be fixed with cement to the end of the femur (thigh bone) and also to the top of the tibia (shin bone) that make up the knee joint. The surgeon will make sure that the alignment and function of your knee is restored at this point. A plastic spacer is then connected to the tibial component, which recreates the native joint space. The third component of the knee replacement is the knee cap (patella). The back of the knee cap is also fitted with a plastic implant that acts to resurface the back of the knee cap, allowing for smoother flexion and extension of the knee.

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Medial Patellafemoral Ligament Reconstruction

This procedure is performed in two parts. Initially an arthroscopy of the knee is done to complete a lateral release. This involves releasing tight tissue on the outside of the knee that is pulling the knee cap out to the side and causing the knee cap to dislocate.

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Arthroscopic Meniscectomy

Arthroscopy of the knee with partial meniscectomy requires two small incisions in the front of the knee. Once the tear is visualized, the torn edges are shaved or bitten away using small instruments. This will leave a smooth edge of the meniscus so the patient can move the knee without any catching or locking sensation.

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Arthroscopic Meniscus Repair

Arthroscopy of the knee with meniscus repair requires two small incisions in the front of the knee. Once the tear is visualized and deemed repairable, the edges of the torn meniscus are reattached to the body of the meniscus using surgical suture or tacks.

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Arthroscopic Bursectomy

Arthroscopy with bursectomy usually involves one to two small incisions on the knee. The arthroscope is placed into the bursa along with a small shaving device. This device cleans out the bursa of any debris or inflamed tissue.

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Arthroscopic ACL Reconstruction

Prior to ACL reconstruction surgery, a patient must have full range of motion of the knee. Therefore, it is common to be sent for a month of physical therapy prior to surgery in order to regain range of motion.

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Patellafemoral Chondromalacia

Patellafemoral chondromalacia refers to the wearing out of the cartilage on the back of the patella (knee cap). Patients will often describe pain with squatting, kneeling, or walking down stairs. Treatment varies and includes medications, physical therapy, and injections.

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Patella Dislocation / Subluxation

The knee cap, also known as the patella, can slip out of its groove and dislocate or subluxate. This is often due to trauma or a laxity of the ligaments that secure the patella in its groove. Patients will commonly report pain with climbing stairs or with lateral motion following a patellar dislocation. Treatment includes bracing, medications, and physical therapy. If the issue is recurring frequently, surgery may be necessary.

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Meniscus Injury

A meniscus injury describes when the cartilage pad in the knee joint is torn. The meniscus acts as a shock absorber in the knee and is injured during an episode of the knee twisting while the foot is planted. Symptoms of a meniscus tear include pain with squatting and twisting motions, or a catching and locking sensation in the knee. Treatment for a meniscus tear includes medication, physical therapy, and possibly surgery.

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Medial Collateral Ligament (MCL) Sprain

The medial collateral ligament (MCL) is a knee stabilizing ligament that is on the inside aspect of the knee. This ligament is prone to injury when a patient experiences a traumatic hit to the outside aspect of the knee which forces the knee inward. Treatment for MCL tears involves medications, physical therapy, and bracing.

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Patellar Tendonitis

Patellar Tendonitis, also known as Jumper’s Knee, is an overuse condition of the knee that is a result of jumping or kicking sports. Patients with this condition will experience pain in the front of the knee below the knee cap. Treatment for patellar tendonitis includes medications, physical therapy, and cold therapy.

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Baker’s Cyst

A Baker’s cyst, also known as a popliteal cyst, is a condition of the knee where the bursa sac in the back of the knee becomes inflamed and often fills with fluid. Treatment for a Baker’s cyst may include aspiration (removal of the fluid), medications, and possibly physical therapy.

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Anterior Cruciate Ligament Tear

The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) is a stabilizing ligament for the knee. A tear of the ACL often results from a twisting or hyperextension episode of the knee. At the time of injury, an audible pop is commonly heard. Treatment for an ACL tear will include arthroscopic reconstruction of the ACL.

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