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A total ankle replacement, also called total ankle arthroplasty, is a surgical treatment option for patients suffering from ankle pain, typically due to arthritis or injury. If this pain is impacting a patient’s quality of life or keeping them from walking comfortably, they might benefit from a total ankle arthroplasty. While lesser known than a total hip, knee or shoulder replacement, total ankle replacements are gaining popularity.
Who is a candidate for a total ankle replacement?
If a patient suffers from ankle pain that affects their day-to-day routine, nonsurgical treatments sometimes do not relieve pain. This might include not being able to go on short walks, frequently needing support while standing, or the ankle pain becoming progressively worse over time. In these cases, a total ankle replacement may be an option. This procedure removes arthritic cartilage and part of the bone from the ankle joint to replace it with a prosthetic joint.
Typically, patients who are older than 50 who do not participate in high-impact activities, such as running and jumping, are the best candidates for this procedure. However, younger patients will also be considered if the surgery is in their best interest.
What are the benefits of a total ankle replacement?
Benefits of a total ankle replacement include:
- Pain relief
- Improved range of motion
- Better function
- Surrounding joints are not affected
What is life like after total ankle replacement surgery?
Most patients are able to return to their normal activities after a total ankle replacement, as long as those activities do not include excessive stress on the ankle. It is important to remember, however, that the recovery process does not happen overnight, and you must allow time for your ankle to heal properly. This can take up to a full year.
I recommend staying active by participating in low-impact activities such as swimming, cycling or yoga. These types of exercises are gentle on the joints and will prolong the life of the new joint.
New Mexico Orthopaedics is a multi-disciplinary orthopaedic clinic located in Albuquerque New Mexico. We have multiple physical therapy clinics located throughout the Albuquerque metro area.
New Mexico Orthopaedics offers a full spectrum of services related to orthopaedic care and our expertise ranges from acute conditions such as sports injuries and fractures to prolonged, chronic care diagnoses, including total joint replacement and spinal disorders.
Because our team of highly-trained physicians specialize in various aspects of the musculoskeletal system, our practice has the capacity to treat any orthopaedic condition, and offer related support services, such as physical therapy, WorkLink and much more.
If you need orthopedic care in Albuquerque New Mexico contact New Mexico Orthopaedics at 505-724-4300.