Total ankle replacement, also called ankle arthroplasty, is a surgical procedure for patients with arthritis of the ankle. Orthopedic foot and ankle specialists use this procedure to relieve pain and maintain motion in the ankle as opposed to an ankle fusion which relieves pain but eliminates motion. Dr. Carr Vineyard, is a renowned Orthopedic Surgeon in Dallas, Texas, shares that arthritic changes in the ankle can occur due to multiple reasons. “Arthritic changes in the ankle can be the result of normal wear and tear, as well as from injuries such as broken bones, dislocations, or frequent sprains. Rheumatoid arthritis and gout are other common causes.” Arthritis of the ankle can lead to the loss of cartilage, intense pain, and deformity, so it is best to visit your board certified orthopedic surgeon at the first signs of pain or injury.
Total ankle replacement procedures are considered for those who experience moderate to severe ankle pain and decreased movement in the ankle from arthritis after trying conservative treatment methods.
Conservative methods include:
- Physical Therapy
- Activity modification
- Anti-inflammatory medication
- Steroid injections
- Ankle braces
Dr. Vineyard reports that “ankle replacement surgery is a great option for some patients to eliminate pain and preserve motion at the ankle joint, allowing them to continue with normal activities.” During the procedure, high-tech metals and plastics are used to replace the damaged joint surface, allowing for continued movement of the ankle. When the motion of the ankle is preserved with a total ankle replacement, the surrounding joints are also protected from increased wear and tear. In the past, those who have had ankle fusions usually had arthritis in the surrounding joints within 15 years. For this reason, the number of ankle replacements being performed is increasing dramatically with significantly improved outcomes using newer techniques. Patients are able to be more active after a total ankle replacement than they were before the procedure with little or no pain. If you have ankle arthritis/pain and are interested in learning about your treatment options, contact Dr. Vineyard for a consultation.
Dr. Carr Vineyard is a Dallas Board Certified Orthopedic Surgeon, who specializes in the comprehensive management of foot and ankle disorders with The Carrell Clinic. Dr. Carr Vineyard has been named Top10MD for 2016. Only 1 in 3 doctors succeeds with this recognition in the United States. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Vineyard call 214-220-2468.