An arthroscopy is generally a safe type of surgery and any complications, such as stiffness and swelling in the affected joint, are usually minor and temporary.
More serious complications are much rarer, occurring in less than 1 in 100 cases. They include:
- a blood clot that develops in one of the limbs - this is known as a deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and causes pain and swelling in the affected limb
- infection inside the joint - this is known as septic arthritis and causes fever, pain and swelling in the joint
- bleeding inside the joint - which can often cause severe pain and swelling in the joint
- accidental damage to the nerves that are near the joint - which can lead to numbness and some loss of sensation
You should contact your surgical team for advice if you think that you may have developed a complication after having an arthroscopy.