Ankle fusion

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emmalynne87
emmalynne87 Member Posts: 3
edited 21. Dec 2017, 12:21 in Living with Arthritis archive
Hi,

I have my date for the ankle fusion,13th March. I should be happy relived its finally happening. But when I went for my pre op assessment I didn't get to see my doctor so I know I'm having an ankle fusion and that I will be completely under but I don't know what method he will be using, or the risks involved, how long my stay will be or the length of time with physio. Is this normal?

I'm 29 years of age I worry how long this procedure lasts until I require more treatment and the possible problems I could face as result of having this op.

My biggest fear is that I thought I would have more control and more say in what happens to me. I never had that the first time round. I was in a RTC and everything just happened I had a trauma injury which resulted in arthritis.

It would be great to hear from those who have had a similar experience and or those who have been through or going through an ankle fusion.

Comments

  • [Deleted User]
    [Deleted User] Posts: 3,635
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi emmalynne87 and welcome to Arthritis Care forums.

    No wonder you are apprehensive: an ankle fusion is a large change as it cannot be reversed and, once it is done, the ankle no longer moves.

    It would be well worth your peace of mind making an appointment to see your own doctor to get answers to anything you are concerned about: going along with a list of questions so as not to forget anything is well worth doing :)

    The Arthritis Care web site has a booklet on the treatments for Osteoarthritis of the ankle and has a small section on ankle fusion: https://www.arthritiscare.org.uk/do-i-have-arthritis/publications/1179-osteoarthritis-of-the-ankle

    I'm sure that our wonderful forum members will also be able to provide both good advice and first-hand experiences that will also help.

    Best wishes
    Brynmor
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,726
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hello there. I've not had an ankle fusion but am a veteran of hip and knee replacements.

    I can understand your fears and anxiety but that's normal before any op. This is clearly something you need so go for it and I hope you'll reap the benefits. My ankles fused themselves over the years (I have RA) and I have virtually no pain in them now.

    I've never asked any of my surgeons or anaesthetists which method they'll use as that would mean nothing to me. I tell them the facts and let them get on with things. I think any foot surgery has quite a long recuperation period. After all, the foot bears all the body's weight.

    There are some former threads here http://tinyurl.com/jogowxa which might help you until someone who's had it turns up :)
    If at first you don't succeed, then skydiving definitely isn't for you.
    Steven Wright
  • mermaid
    mermaid Member Posts: 104
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi there, I have had both of my ankles fused plus a triple hindfoot fusion on the left foot. 2002 and 2007, still doing well, no complications. Relief from pain is really good, of course movement is restricted but it was anyway. I had bone grafts taken from my pelvis as little bone available due to severe RA and osteoporosis.
    I think the hardest part was being non weight-bearing initially and the bone graft took a while to unite, so patience is required and you are a lot younger than me.
    Lots of luck with the op, do ask if you have any further questions. Best wishes, Liz
  • emmalynne87
    emmalynne87 Member Posts: 3
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Thank you for responding and providing useful information on fusion. I have since spoken to my doctor's PA and given a list of questions so hopefully I will have some answers soon. On the plus side I have very supportive friends and family and work have been very good, full pay for 2 months!
  • stevenshm
    stevenshm Member Posts: 4
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hello everyone
    It has been interested to read your experiences of ankle fusions

    I was diagnosed with arthritis in my left ankle around 10 years ago,
    after a motorbike accident a few years before
    I ankle has recently been aching/hurting a lot more recently
    and had another x ray and they have left a note saying
    "Moderate degeneration" or words that effect
    my question is
    i'm 42 and a postman when im off work the aching dies down
    so should i carry on with this job making it worst?
    or change jobs and try and delay surgery as long as possible?

    also if i was to carry on and get the ankle fusion with the amount of walking 6 days a week would it possible with the ankle fused or would it just pass the problem on to other joints?

    i hope this wasn't to long winded!
    but just looking for some advice before i make the decision
    as if been a postie over 20 years and like the job
    but if possible want to avoid damaging my permanently

    thanks for your help
  • [Deleted User]
    [Deleted User] Posts: 3,635
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi stevenshm,
    welcome to the forum, I'm glad you have found it useful to read some of our other posts on ankle fusions. Here is a link to a page on tips to do with ankle surgery that you might find useful. https://www.arthritisresearchuk.org/arthritis-information/hints-and-tips/surgery/ankle-fusion.aspx
    also I thought you might like to read a link about having an ankle replacement which is an alternative surgery that is now being offered https://www.arthritisresearchuk.org/arthritis-information/arthritis-today-magazine/145-summer-2009/the-end-of-ankle-pain.aspx
    as regards whether you need to change jobs, or how having a fused foot would impact on being a postman, it really is very difficult to say as everyone is an individual. The important thing would be to take a list of questions to your orthopaedic consultant and ask them for their opinions and advice on these issues, as they obviously see a lot more cases and would be better positioned to advise you.

    We look forward to hearing more from you, keep us up-to-date with how things go for you it's always good to know what people's experiences are with various surgeries. Meanwhile Merry Christmas and happy New Year.
    Best Wishes
    Sharon
  • stevenshm
    stevenshm Member Posts: 4
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    moderator wrote:
    Hi stevenshm,
    welcome to the forum, I'm glad you have found it useful to read some of our other posts on ankle fusions. Here is a link to a page on tips to do with ankle surgery that you might find useful. https://www.arthritisresearchuk.org/arthritis-information/hints-and-tips/surgery/ankle-fusion.aspx
    also I thought you might like to read a link about having an ankle replacement which is an alternative surgery that is now being offered https://www.arthritisresearchuk.org/arthritis-information/arthritis-today-magazine/145-summer-2009/the-end-of-ankle-pain.aspx
    as regards whether you need to change jobs, or how having a fused foot would impact on being a postman, it really is very difficult to say as everyone is an individual. The important thing would be to take a list of questions to your orthopaedic consultant and ask them for their opinions and advice on these issues, as they obviously see a lot more cases and would be better positioned to advise you.

    We look forward to hearing more from you, keep us up-to-date with how things go for you it's always good to know what people's experiences are with various surgeries. Meanwhile Merry Christmas and happy New Year.
    Best Wishes
    Sharon

    thank you Sharon for the information

    and enjoy the Christmas holidays
  • trepolpen
    trepolpen Member Posts: 504
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi stevenshm, welcome to the forum,

    I had RA for over 20 years , I needed both my keels fused where they fuse the three bones & stops the side ways movement & at some time will need the main joint fused

    If you go to your GP & ask to be refered , they will help you decide which joints you need help with , you could try a brace which would immobilize the ankle & see if that helps & will also tell whay its like having your ankle fused