Learning if Ankle Replacement Surgery is Right For You

Digital composite of Highlighted ankle of woman on treadmill

Our feet and ankles are a very intricate part of the bodies skeletal system. 26 bones, 33 joints, 107 ligaments, and 19 muscles are worked together all in concert for the purpose of stable and flexible foot movement. The bones that allow this are in the ankle joints enveloped in cartilage (connective tissue formed in various parts of the body tying bones together). Although cartilage is tough and flexible, it’s relatively easy to damage and wear out. After it gets damaged, cartilage in the ankle normally grows progressively worse and people may begin to contract ankle arthritis after their ankle joints become inflamed. Symptoms of ankle arthritis can include pain, swelling, stiffness, and tenderness around the ankle area. Other symptoms can be weakness or instability when pressure is applied on the ankle or foot. 

To locals of Cincinatti, ankle replacement surgery Cincinnati oh is the next step forward after trying medication and physical therapy to no avail. The number of ankle replacements, or ankle arthroplasty, have increased in recent years following from modern ankle prosthetic designs that are producing better results than prior decades. Studies have also shown it to be more cost-effective than other surgical alternatives such as ankle joint fusion or arthroscopic debridement. The average costs for the surgery is $20,620 in Cincinnati compared to the national average of $23,936, though prices can range from $14,730 to $40,507. Having the surgery performed inside of a outpatient surgery center will, on average, save a patient approximately $10,000 when contrasted with an inpatient facility, like a hospital. According to New Choice Health: 

  • Outpatient Facility Average: $19,610
  • Inpatient Facility Average: $29,662

What Exactly Happens During The Replacement Surgery? 

During the surgery, the patient is given an anesthetic and then the “surgeon will remove the damaged cartilage and the damaged part of the lower end of your shin bone (tibia) and the ankle bone (talus) so the new joint will fit precisely. The metal parts of your new artificial joint are then attached to the bone using a special bone cement”. 


“Immediately after surgery, you will be placed in a splint to ensure that your ankle does not move.” Prepare to stay in the hospital or outpatient surgery center for recovery for about 1 to 4 days post operation. Later, crutches will be needed to move around for several weeks to avoid the patients feet from swelling. Afterwords, physical therapy will began and can last up to three to six months. The ankle replacement itself lasts 10 years or more depending on the patients overall health, activeness and the amount of damage done to the ankle joint before the surgery. 

In addition, the success rates for people who went at least five years without needing further ankle surgery was between 67% and 94% and ten-year survival rates were at 75% as more surgeons gained experience at better performing the procedure. Of course, always consult with a local Cincinnati doctor about getting a proper diagnosis and figuring out what the best next step should be.


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