Ankle arthritis can be caused by weakened bones or osteoarthritis. This is also a condition often associated with aging. As we age, our bones may weaken making us susceptible to ankle arthritis. The condition is caused by thinning cartilage and bone thickening in the ankle. Those with previous ankle injuries or suffering from rheumatic disorders are also good candidates for ankle arthritis.
Symptoms of ankle arthritis include chronic pain and swelling. When pain becomes unmanageable or resting the feet does not provide relief, then consulting with a podiatrist is recommended. The doctors of The Podiatry Group are podiatrists who specialize in foot and ankle problems.
1. Ankle Replacement – is a surgical procedure that involves replacing worn-out ends of the talus and tibia bones with artificial ends crafted from metal or plastic. Surgery takes around one to two hours and requires two days for hospital stay. Unlike other types of ankle surgery treatments, you are able to move your joint after surgery. Ankle replacement joints usually lasts for 10 to 15 years. Like normal joints, ankle replacements are subject to wear and tear. A bone graft maybe required to replace the bone. Ankle surgery is also more complicated after an ankle replacement has been performed. However, this is not uncommon and further treatments have a high rate of success.
2. Ankle Fusion – this type of surgery involves removing the injured ankle joint. The talus bone and tibia are then fused together. This is to create a strong pain-free structure to replace the joint. The foot is fused at a right angle with respect to your leg. This is the same position the ankle would be when you’re standing up. The talus bone and tibia are held together using screws. New bone growth could be seen developing across the two until these are fused together. It takes three to four months for the bones to fuse together completely. Arthroscopy or keyhole surgery where in a small cut is done could be used as an alternative to open surgery. This is less invasive and requires a smaller cut producing less tissue trauma.
3. Triple Fusion – these involves the fusion of three joints. The subtalar, talonavicular and calcaneocuboid joints are fused together to correct foot deformities. It utilizes plates, staples or screws to fuse these joints together.
At The Podiatry Group, located in Jonesboro, Walnut Ridge, Pocahontas and Cherokee Village, we specialize in helping people find relief from chronic foot pain and foot disorders. To schedule an appointment call (870) 931-3338.