LLR Policy for Arthroscopy of the Knee

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Threshold Criteria

Knee arthroscopy is a technique which allows for the inspection of the interior of the knee. The instrument used is a type of endoscope which is a tube shaped instrument inserted into a cavity in the body to investigate and treat disorders. It is flexible and equipped with lenses and a light source. It is a technically challenging procedure which should only be carried out in specialist units by teams with specific training in the techniques.


LLR ICB will only fund when one of the following criteria is met:

Knee pain with diagnostic uncertainty following an MRI scan


Infection, fracture or avascular necrosis

If MRI does not suggest a surgically curable target then patients will be counselled on their treatment options.

LLR ICB do not fund knee arthroscopy for patients with osteoarthritis because it is clinically ineffective i.e. does not reduce pain or improve how well the knee worked.

ARP 6 Review Date: 2026

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