Elbow arthroscopy: An update

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Purpose of review: To review the common current indications for elbow arthroscopy and to highlight the recently published outcomes of these procedures. Recent findings: The indications for elbow arthroscopy continue to evolve as technology improves and experience with these procedures accumulates. In the past year, studies involving arthroscopy of the elbow have been limited to a few clinical series reporting the outcomes of surgery for a variety of clinical problems. Elbow arthroscopy is commonly used to treat elbow contracture, inflammatory synovitis, lateral epicondylitis, and osteoarthritis. Recent studies have contributed valuable data regarding the safety and efficacy of arthroscopy for the treatment of refractory elbow synovitis and lateral epicondylitis. Surgical techniques that help to minimize the risk of neurovascular injury and reduce the difficulty of more complex procedures continue to evolve. Unfortunately, clinical trials reporting the results of advanced procedures such as arthroscopic osteocapsular arthroplasty of the arthritic elbow have not been reported. Summary: Recent outcomes studies further support the use of elbow arthroscopy for certain clinical problems. Elbow arthroscopy remains a technically demanding surgery with several inherent risks. Further studies are needed to better define the indications and limitations of elbow arthroscopy and to report the risks and benefits of more complicated surgical procedures.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)280-284
Number of pages5
JournalCurrent Opinion in Orthopaedics
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2005


  • Elbow arthroscopy
  • Elbow osteoarthritis
  • Elbow stiffness
  • Inflammatory arthritis
  • Lateral epicondylitis


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