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If need an Ankle Arthrotomy, please Schedule an appointment with one of our orthopedic specialists as soon as possible.

What Is Ankle Arthrotomy?

Ankle Arthrotomy involves surgeons making an open incision into the ankle joint to access the structures within it.  Arthroscopic procedures use a small incisions and a camera (arthroscope) for visualization. However, this procedure offers direct access to the joint. Moreover, this allows the surgeon to address various conditions or conduct more extensive surgical interventions.

Surgeons may recommend this procedure for various ankle joint conditions. Firstly, in cases of severe ankle fractures, surgeons may find an arthrotomy necessary to properly realign and stabilize the joint. Additionally, in instances of deep-seated ankle joint infections, surgeons perform ankle arthrotomy to thoroughly clean and drain the infected joint space. This aims to reduce the risk of complications. Furthermore, in advanced cases of ankle osteoarthritis, surgical intervention may be necessary for joint debridement, fusion, or implantation of an ankle prosthesis. Especially when non-surgical treatments prove ineffective. Moreover, ankle arthrotomy facilitates the removal of loose bone or cartilage fragments within the joint that may be causing pain and limiting joint function. Lastly, in cases of severe ankle instability due to ligament injuries, surgeons provide access for ligament repair or reconstruction through ankle arthrotomy.

Ankle Arthrotomy Procedure

During the procedure, the surgeon makes an incision over the ankle joint. Moreover, they carefully moves aside surrounding tissues to expose the joint space. After addressing the specific issue within the joint, the surgeon closes the incision with sutures or staples and immobilize the ankle.

While ankle arthrotomy provides more direct access to the joint, it is generally considered a more invasive procedure compared to arthroscopic techniques. Consequently, it may require a longer recovery period and may carry a higher risk of complications, such as infection and delayed wound healing.

The decision to perform the procedure depends on the patient’s individual condition, the extent of joint damage, and the surgeon’s judgment of the most appropriate treatment approach. Whenever possible, less invasive treatments, such as arthroscopy, are typically considered first. As with any surgical procedure, it’s crucial to have a thorough discussion with an orthopedic surgeon to understand the benefits, risks, and expected outcomes.

Ankle Arthrotomy Rehabilitation

Ankle arthrotomy rehabilitation involves a structured process aimed at optimizing recovery and restoring functionality following surgical intervention on the ankle joint. Post-surgery, patients typically begin with wound care to ensure proper healing of the incision site. Physical therapy plays a pivotal role, initially focusing on gentle exercises to reduce swelling, maintain joint mobility, and prevent stiffness.

As healing progresses, therapy advances to include strengthening exercises targeting muscles around the ankle to improve stability and support. Range-of-motion exercises are also crucial to regain flexibility and enhance mobility in the ankle joint.

Occupational therapy may be integrated to assist patients in relearning daily activities and adapting to functional tasks while recovering. Throughout the rehabilitation process, therapists monitor progress closely and tailor the program to meet individual recovery milestones.

Adherence to the prescribed rehabilitation plan is essential for achieving optimal outcomes. Furthermore reducing pain and restoring the ankle’s function to enable patients to return to their normal activities with improved mobility and strength.

If you would like to speak to an Orthopedic Specialist, give us a call at 817-697-4038, or contact us over the web. Tele-medicine appointments are also available.