Ankle operations - Tibiotalocalcaneal fusion

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Quercus
Quercus Member Posts: 8
edited 30. Apr 2014, 04:41 in Living with Arthritis archive
I have been offered a Tibiotalocalcaneal fusion of my left ankle as my only option to correct my left ankle deformity and reduce the pain. I have had Rheumatoid Arthritis for 45 years and the hind foot in the ankle is already fused. I understand what the operation involves but can find no information from people who have had the operation regarding the recovery period and long term results. My main worry concerns my inability to weight bear using crutches as a result of RA damage to my arms. The usual discharge period, after the op, is 4/5 days. How can I prepare?

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  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,730
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hello quercus and welcome on board :)

    The name of your op is completely unfamiliar to me and, as I'm on here most days, I think I'd have recognised it if I'd heard the term before so I'm not sure there'll be many who will be able to give you tips on that particular op. What I can tell you is that, due to RA in hands, wrists, shoulders etc, I've never been able to use crutches of any sort and that hasn't been a problem with recovery from my THRs and TKRs. They just start me on a gutter frame, I progress to a zimmer then, once home, walk round the furniture as there isn't room for it.

    I appreciate that an ankle op is quite different as you'll probably be unable to weightbear on it for some time but I'm sure the occy health people will come up with something. This is new to you but, almost certainly, not to them. Have you had your pre-op yet? That would be a good time to bring the matter up.

    I hope it goes well. My own ankles were abysmal before they fused themselves. I wouldn't like to go back to the bad old days.

    P.S. Great username :D
    If at first you don't succeed, then skydiving definitely isn't for you.
    Steven Wright
  • elnafinn
    elnafinn Member Posts: 7,412
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi Quercus

    Would this link help you at all?

    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=3861645

    Elna
    The happiest people don't have the best of everything. They just make the best of everything.

    If you can lay down at night knowing in your heart that you made someone's day just a little bit better, you know you had a good day.
  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,520
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hello, it's lovely to meet you but I'm afraid I won't be of much help. :oops: Recovery times and outcomes vary from patient to patient, all we can do as patients is play our part as best we can with post-op exercise and rest, and patience; recuperation takes far longer than any of us would like.

    I can see that getting about after will be very difficult, what are your living circumstances? Are you in a flat, a bungalow or a house? At our old house (which had a ground floor bathroom behind the kitchen) I would sleep in the dining room for as long as it took for me to heal as much as necessary so I could manage the stairs again. I would stock the freezer with home-made as well as ready-meals so that cooking could be as straightforward as possible, and I had some very good friends who would pop in with milk etc. I have now discovered the joys of internet food shopping (after breaking my arm back in January) so could that be an option for you? If you don't have one then get a Kindle (they are easier to hold than books) and ensure that you have a telly within seeing distance. Come on here and talk to us as well, we are very good at supporting our post-op friends :) . I wish you well. DD
    Have you got the despatches? No, I always walk like this. Eddie Braben
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,730
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    DD's post has reminded me - one of the things the Occupational Therapist can provide, if needed, is a commode. I was once loaned one. Never needed it but it was a reassuring presence :wink:
    If at first you don't succeed, then skydiving definitely isn't for you.
    Steven Wright
  • trepolpen
    trepolpen Member Posts: 504
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi Quercus , I had both ankles fused with Triple Arthrodesis & now need a something done with my right main ankle joint & not sure what method they will use but was told it would need doing at some point when I had the ankle fused

    the Triple Arthrodesis was about 5 days in hospital & 6 weeks in plaster & another 6 months with a air boot & expect the recovery is something similar , will be interested how you get on , some on here had STAR™ Ankle Replacement but know its not suitable for everyone
  • Quercus
    Quercus Member Posts: 8
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Many thanks for all your replies. Would never think of looking at the MoneyExpert Forum. Have now decided to go ahead with the operation and await a date.
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,730
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Good luck, quercus, and thanks for the update.
    If at first you don't succeed, then skydiving definitely isn't for you.
    Steven Wright