Recovering from ankle surgery
Following your ankle surgery, you will need to stay in the hospital for a day or two. Your consultant will see you at various intervals, while our physiotherapy team will work closely with you from the first few days following surgery, helping you to mobilize safely. Sensible, slow, appropriate exercise and movement will help with a full recovery.
Before you are discharged, your physiotherapist will have taught you some mobility and strengthening exercises to aid in the recovery and rehabilitation of your ankle joint. They will explain when and how often you should do these exercises once you return home. You will normally need to use crutches or a walking frame as you recover, and your physiotherapist will ensure you are confident and safe using these.
You should not drive after ankle surgery until you have recovered enough to use your leg safely. Your Circle doctor will be able to give you more advice on when you can expect to start driving again. You should also always confirm with your insurance provider that you are covered before you start driving again following any form of ankle surgery.
You will see your consultant at Circle at various intervals to review your progress.
Complications of surgery for ankle arthritis
Any type of surgery carries certain risks and complications. Common complications include:
- Infection: We have a number of protocols in place to reduce the risk of infection. In addition, Circle hospitals do not admit infectious or trauma patients, which helps to further reduce the risk of infection.
- Bruising: Usually clears within a week or two of the surgery.
- Lightheadedness: This normally clears with a couple of days.
- Blood clots: Your risk of developing a clot is low and there are well-established treatments available to resolve them should they occur, including aspirin.
There are some specific complications of ankle surgery to be aware of:
- Residual pain: It is common to have a bit of pain after surgery and normally painkillers can help to manage this effectively. If the pain continues for longer than expected you should speak with your doctor for advice.
- Nerve injury: Although very rare, there is a small risk of damage to the nerves in your ankle. This may cause numbness in the ankle, foot or leg.
- Loosening of the prosthesis: Should this occur, the replacement may be removed and ‘revised’ to a fusion or another replacement.
- Non-union of fusion: Should this occur, further surgery may be required.
We know that ankle arthritis can have a significant impact on your life. If you are struggling with pain and stiffness in the joint, we believe that it should be easy to get expert help. That is why we have made it very easy to meet with one of our ankle specialists. All you need to do is to contact your closest Circle hospital to book an appointment at a convenient time for you. We have no waiting lists, so you won’t need to waste months waiting to see a doctor, while your ankle pain gets worse.
Please contact us today by completing the form below for help regaining pain-free movement in your ankle.
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