Ankle Replacement Surgery is commonly known as Ankle Arthroplasty . It is the replacement of an ankle joint damaged by arthritis with a prosthesis which is made of plastic and metal. The ankle joint is a joint where your shinbone rests it is on top of a bone of your foot, known as the talus. Ankle Replacement Surgery helps to remove pain, swelling and preserve motion in the arthritic ankle joint.
Types of ankle arthritis are:
- Osteoarthritis- This is “wear and tear” inflammatory disease that develops in older adults.
- Rheumatoid arthritis- This is a system wide autoimmune disease that affects the joints.
- Posttraumatic arthritis- This can happen due to a past injury of your joint.
Patients who need Ankle Replacement Surgery
Ankle replacement surgery is done to those patients who have severe arthritis in their ankle which causes symptoms like:
- Severe pain
- Stiffness in joints that is leading to difficulty in walking or climbing stairs.
- Pain in joints during and after exercise
- Stiffness in joints after sitting too long
If the patient is facing one or more of these symptoms, then one should consult a podiatrist or orthopedic surgeon who will help you decide if he/she needs a surgery. In addition to this the doctor may also recommend alternative, less invasive treatments that will depend on the condition of the patient’s joint.
Ankle Replacement Surgery is not advisable:
- If you have an active or prior deep infection in the ankle joint,
- Inadequate bone to support the implants
- Neuromuscular disease that impairs muscles resulting in poor muscle tone and function in the ankle.
- Patients who have loss of sensation in foot and ankle
- Severe ankle deformity
- Ankle fusion done before, or poor musculature quality .
Benefits and Risks associated with Ankle Replacement Surgery
• Relief from severe pain
• Provides patients with better movement and mobility of the ankle that makes them feel normal.
• Protect the other joints around the ankle from becoming arthritic.
One can get back to low-demand activities, such as walking, biking, hiking, swimming
Risks – Like any other surgery, ankle replacement surgery too carries some risks
- Chances of infection
- Blood clots
- Damage of nerves
- Wear and tear of the artificial parts
- Loosening of artificial joint
- Failing of bone to grow into the joint
- Diabetic patients are at a higher risks
Ankle Replacement Surgery Procedure
Before the procedure, one may need additional imaging tests, like X-rays, CT scan, or MRI. Patient should tell their doctor about all the medicines they take, including over-the-counter medicines like aspirin. Also, tell any recent changes in their overall health, such as a fever.
Ankle replacement surgery requires general anesthesia with a regional nerve block and 1-2 days in the ho+spital. It is performed through an incision approximately 15 cm (6 inches) long over the front of the ankle.
The worn out joint surfaces are cut away and replaced with a pair of pieces of metal with a piece of hard plastic between them that permits the joint to maneuver freely.
If the calf muscle or Achilles tendon is tight, the surgeon may lengthen it in order to improve the ankle’s range of motion. The surgeon might use screws to stabilize the new joint and keep it positioned properly.
The operation takes between 60 and 90 minutes.
The stitches are removed about 2 weeks after surgery. In the days when surgery, it's necessary to keep your foot elevated the maximum amount as doable so as to cut back swelling.
For about 4-6 weeks from the date of surgery patient should not bear weight on his ankle. After that, he will be transition into a pneumatic boot (it looks like a ski boot with an inflatable liner for additional compression), and encourage to work on range of motion with the ankle. Around 3 months after your surgery, he will transition into a shoe with an ankle brace and may start non-impact activities.
After a year, most patients can return to low-demand activities such as walking, biking, hiking, swimming and using an elliptical trainer. Engaging in high-impact activities, such as running or other sports that have a lot of impact on the ankle, may decrease the life expectancy of the prosthesis in the ankle.
Why choose Max Healthcare
Max Healthcare is equipped with best technology and team of experienced doctors to perform total ankle arthroplasty. Our ankle arthroplasty specialist provides comprehensive care you need for an effective procedure and a successful recovery.
Our doctors have years of experience, and together, perform significant number of foot and ankle surgical procedures annually. These include many revisions for patients who continue to have ankle problems following a joint replacement.
We also work together with other specialists you need to manage your condition and follow multidisciplinary approach by providing you with many additional orthopedic services to support your treatment and recovery. These services include:
- Pedorthic and shoe consultants, if you need special orthotics or shoes
- Durable medical goods, including braces, crutches, and other equipment you may need during recovery
- Physical therapy