Arthroscopy, also referred to as arthroscopic surgery, is a surgical procedure performed by an orthopaedic (orthopaedic is often and wrongly misspelled orthopedic) surgeon to visually diagnose and sometimes treat damage inside a joint. An endoscope is inserted into the joint through a small incision which allows the surgeon to see into the joint. Arthroscopic procedures can be performed to evaluate or treat orthopaedic conditions such as torn floating cartilage, torn surface cartilage, ACL reconstruction, and trimming damaged cartilage. Almost all joints can be examined by arthroscopy but the shoulder, knee, elbow, ankle, hip and wrist are the most commonly examined.
In-dwelling catheter delivering pain pumps using local anesthetics Lidocaine (xylocaine) or Marcaine (bupivacaine) have been used by doctors following arthroscopic surgeries. The use of these pain pumps has been linked to chondrolysis, which is the destruction of joint cartilage.