If you have an arthritic condition or if you have an injury that has left your ankle in poor condition, then you may want to speak to a podiatrist who is able to perform an operation like an ankle replacement. There are a few types of surgeries that can be performed that include a total ankle replacement surgery. Keep reading to learn about this procedure, how it is different from other ones, and how it is beneficial.
What Is A Total Ankle Replacement Surgery?
If your ankle has been damaged, then treatments that include bracing, orthotics, medication, steroidal injections, and activity modification may be used to try to restore movement along the ankle. If these treatments fail, then a surgery may be explored that includes a fusion operation. This procedure involves the fusing of the tibia to the talus bone. The tibia is one of the leg bones while the talus is a bone that makes up the base of the ankle. These bones are often fused together using pins, screws, or plates, and this greatly restricts movement.
Most people want to retain movement in the ankle, and this is possible with a procedure like a total ankle replacement surgery. This operation involves the placement of implant devices along the tibia and the talus to preserve the articulation surfaces. These are the surfaces that meet one another and allow for smooth and strong movements of the ankle. In this way, the procedure is similar to a knee replacement operation.
The implant devices are typically made out of plastic and titanium or plastic and steel.
What Are The Benefits Of Total Ankle Replacement?
The main benefit of this operation over other procedures is the fact that the ankle is able to retain almost complete, natural, and total movement. The goal of the surgeon who completes the procedure is restoration and retention of movement while other procedures focus on salvaging the ankle.
Along with movement, you can expect that the replacement surgery with the use of implants will not need to be completed as often as basic stabilization procedures. Implants do often need to be replaced, but you likely will not need another surgery for up to 20 years.
Quality of life is generally enhanced with the replacement procedure, and you can also expect pain reduction if you have an ankle arthritis condition.
If you want to know more about ankle procedures and how operations can be performed to help you retain and regain movement, speak with a podiatrist.