TAR information

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Has anyone had a total ankle replacement?  The doctors seem this may be the only solution to my husbands situation. A lot of arthritis and this causes him to stay in constant pain. 

Haven’t found much research other than the surgery itself. How long is recovery? Will it last? What is the difference with bone fusion?

Any input is appreciated. 

Thank you 

Steph

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  • Posted

    Dear Stephanie

    You will find all the information you need by searching the internet.

    I had a TAR five years ago google Yogesh total ankle replacement Kenward to see how I was doing at twenty weeks post op.

    It is ESSENTIAL that you choose a surgeon who has a proven track record of doing this very demanding operation and does quite a number each year. Most surgeons who do this surgery in the UK do so few that they jack both the experience and the competence.

    If you have a specific question/s please ask.

    Cheers Richard

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    • Posted

      Thank you Richard. I did watch you video. Wasn’t sure if you or the dogs had the surgery as each were so healthy looking. 

      I will continue my research. 

      Where did you have yours performed?

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    • Posted

      Dear Stephanie

      Glad you saw tha video. I made it simply because there did not seem to be any down to earth videos that showed real world walking and stairs work.

      My surgery was carried out in south Wales but from what I can see my surgeon has not done any recently. My TAR has not lasted due I understand because the prosthesis was badly positioned and set at the wrong angle. This is why you need to find a surgeon with a high level of success who does quite a number each year.

      Cheers Richard

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  • Posted

    TAR is relatively new compared to other joint replacements and as such there are few doctors who have experience in performing that surgery.  The ankle is a very complex joint and to develop a replacement has not been a high priority. And there is not a lot of published history on them.  The only option is a fusion which is the less complicated, more widely used method.   If the fusion is an issue you can elect to go for a TAR but if that fails then what?  My suggestion is do your research before you make a decision.   I found a Dr. that offers both procedures and he said TAR is an easier recovery than a fusion but, it may not last as long, it has a higher risk of infection and if you are diabetic or smoke he would hot perform the operation as these two items restrict blood flow which is needed to promote bone growth which is needed more for a TAR than a fusion. 

    Hope me this helps with your thought process and good luck

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    • Posted

      Paul, I suffered a tri malleolar fracture of my left leg in Oct. In a fixator for eights weeks now a boot. Dr wants to do fusion, but has also said if I just wanted to do nothing and see what happens, he could do surgery later. Bones are not totally in line and lots of splinters. How did the fusion work for you?. I am leaning towards fusion as I am already prone to arthritis. I am 58 and want to have some quality of life as I love to fly fish and this is hard on ankles.
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    • Posted

      James I had my fusion in June and was no weight bearing for 18 weeks, partial for 5 weeks then full weight with lots of physio.  I was 70 and very active but my quality of life was not what I new it could be, so decision made.  I some pain swelling and at times was frustrated.  Lucky for me all I needed was on one floor except for my tv which was down one flight and I managed up and down on my butt.  We had a walker, a transfer chair, crutches and a great wife who made sure we got out every other day.  I read lots watched movies and surfed the net.   I still have swelling and try and elevate it for 30 minutes every couple of hours. The only question you need to ask is would I do it again and my answer is absolutely yes.  I know I will be as good as new by the summer back to golf, some hiking on more even grounds but with no pain.....so yes 
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    • Posted

      It is worth bearing in mind that with a fusion the joints in the toes are taking a lot more of the work and may start failing in time.

      Only consider a TAR if the surgeon has an excellent TAR track record and does many each year and if not find another surgeon!

      Cheers Richard

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    • Posted

      Thanks Paul. I am really strongly leaning towards fusion, but want to see xrays when i see dr on the 9th. As you said it is so monotonous. I have now been nwb for 10 weeks already and living on one floor as well. I just am not looking forward to 18+ weeks of more of the same. I am glad things went well for you. I also want quality of life as opposed to constant pain.
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  • Posted

    Hi Steph,

    Sorry to hear of your husband's predicament.

    Major surgery should be viewed as a last resort measure, after all other options have been exhausted. I know that someone in constant pain is very receptive to suggestions that surgery is all that can be done. And of course a doctor with a knife can find it easy to see surgical solutions only.

    Try searching on web using terms like ankle replacement surgery alternatives. You might be surprised what turns up!

    Best wishes to both of you.

     

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