Ankle replacement or ankle arthroplasty is surgery to remove and replace a damaged ankle joint with an artificial joint.
Take a quick joint pain assessment and find an orthopedic surgeon at Dignity Health - St. Rose Dominican for ankle replacement surgery in the Greater Las Vegas and Henderson, NV area.
What to Expect from Ankle Replacement at Dignity Health - St. Rose Dominican Hospitals
During surgery, your doctor will make an incision in your ankle, remove damaged cartilage and bone, and replace it with plastic or metal surfaces. Your surgeon may use the term “ankle implant” when talking about your ankle replacement options. Ankle replacement is major surgery and requires anesthesia.
At Dignity Health - St. Rose Dominican, our staff provides in-depth education so you’ll know what to expect before, during, and after your ankle replacement.
You may spend several days in the hospital. Some people may also need time in a rehabilitation center. You will likely wear a splint or cast and use crutches for up to 12 weeks. You will also need physical therapy to strengthen your ankle and improve movement. Gradually, you’ll regain ankle function with less pain. Full recovery can take three to six months.
There are risks with ankle replacement surgery, including:
- Reaction to anesthesia
- Blood clots
You may have nerve or blood vessel damage, continued ankle pain, or loosening or breakage of the new joint that requires more surgery.
When Should You Treat Ankle Pain with Ankle Arthroplasty?
Doctors use ankle replacement to treat severe ankle joint damage from arthritis, infections, and injuries.
You may be a good candidate for ankle replacement if your:
- Leg muscles function well
- Ankle pain is severe and limits your daily activities
- Circulation is good in your feet and legs
- Ankle isn’t severely deformed
- Legs have no loss of sensation or nerve problems
- Ankle condition or injury hasn’t improved with other treatments such as joint injections, anti-inflammatory medications, physical therapy, or less invasive surgeries
If you are considering ankle replacement, ask your doctor if you are a good candidate for minimally invasive surgery. It can involve less pain and a faster recovery than open surgery.
Life After Ankle Replacement
Ankle replacement can improve your independence and let you return to activities such as climbing stairs, walking, and biking. Many ankle replacements still work well 10 years after surgery. You can help extend the life of your artificial ankle by:
- Exercising regularly to stabilize and strengthen your ankle
- Maintaining a healthy weight
- Avoiding high-impact activities and contact sports
Your surgeon will discuss specific limitations with you.
The skilled surgeons at Dignity Health - St. Rose Dominican offer foot and ankle surgeries, including ankle replacement, in Las Vegas and Henderson, NV.