Ankle replacement


Has anyone out there had a full ankle replacement? Would like to hear your experience.


  • GillyRA
    GillyRA Member Posts: 5

    I need one, but haven’t yet succumbed! I have had long discussions with two orthopaedic consultants, one of whom favours replacement, the other fusion. Being of pensionable age, I think I would opt for fusion, but if I was younger and more physically active, I would go for replacement. Either way, you will be non weight bearing for several weeks, so your other joints need to be able to cope with crutches. Have you tried cortisone injections to the ankle joint? I’ve had several and they all helped, but you do eventually reach a point of no return. It’s a big decision, so seek as much professional advice as possible. Good luck.

  • Hi @Christal

    This isn't an area that I have particular experience in but I do agree with Gilly here- you need to consider your options carefully and find out everything that you can so that you can make an informed decision. Here is some of our VA information that may be of some use to you:

    I'm sorry that I couldn't be of much more use but I'm sure that there are many lovely members here who will be able to share their experiences too.

    Good luck and keep popping in!


  • Christal
    Christal Member Posts: 7

    Hi GillyRA

    i’ve been in contact with 3 foot and ankle surgeons, and have chosen one. I’m travelling from Spain to UK on 2st December to see him, to discuss if fusion or replacement are best for me. I’ll be 72 when and if an operation is done. Without it I’m in real pain. Mine is end stage osteoarthritis, so no cartilage left. Do injections would not work.

    Fingers crossed the right decision happens. I need to be able to walk coz also got osteoporosis. And I’d go insane if I became inactive, just after losing my husband, so living on my own..... 🤞

  • TrishaW
    TrishaW Member Posts: 109

    I had a full ankle replacement in September.

    I'd been putting it off for years, and didn't fancy a fusion.

    I'd had a fusion in a toe before and got complications (complex regional pain syndrome) so was very anxious about getting that again. Also my fused toe has made life quite difficult as it doesnt bend and prevents me from getting up off the floor etc.

    Then I discovered a new-ish technique called Ankle Replacement Prophecy Protocol, which was done by a local surgeon (both private and nhs)

    I had a CT scan of my whole leg which was sent to the USA where laser printing made custom made surgical guides for my operation, and also informed my surgeon which size parts to use. My surgeon then planned the operation on line before operating on me. You can see this proceedure in detail on youtube.

    I was in plaster for 2 weeks completely non weight bearing. I can't manage crutches due to my shoulders etc but I used a knee scooter that I hired and a zimmer (to reach the scooter) Stairs were out of the question so I set a bed up in my lounge . Realistically you will need someone to help you for at least 2 weeks.

    After 2 weeks the plaster came off and I went into an air boot. I could put weight through this so could get about a bit, though I still slept downstairs as it was easier.

    My ankle was swollen but it wasn't as painful as other surgery I've had in the past.

    My ankle can rotate and flex 'as normal'.

    I was amazed at how quickly it improved, though I set it back last month when I fell downstairs...very annoying.

    I've been told I can walk as far as I like and even play light tennis (as if!) but not do lots of running or jumping on it....wish I was able to 😕

    Anyway, I'd say within 6 weeks it was 100% better than it had been pre-operatively.

    So far I'm glad I had it done, and that I have full movement in my 'new' ankle.

    I'm still wearing chunky lace up boots , but I've been wearing them for years anyway.

    I hope this helps!

    Trisha x