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Ankle arthroscopy is a surgical procedure used to diagnose and treat problems with your ankle joint.
During keyhole (arthroscopic) surgery, a thin fibreoptic camera called an arthroscope is inserted into the joint through a tiny incision (cut) in the skin. The camera is connected to a monitor that allows your surgeon to examine the inside of your ankle joint and identify any problems. If needed, surgical instruments can be inserted into the joint through a separate incision, allowing your surgeon to correct any damage.
Call 0141 300 5009 or book online today to arrange a consultation to discuss having a private ankle arthroscopy with a consultant of your choice at Circle Health Group.
This page explains what ankle arthroscopy is, the conditions it can treat, and what to expect during the procedure.
Please be aware that the following prices are a guide price. Your final price will be confirmed in writing following your consultation and any necessary diagnostic tests.
|Post discharge care
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* Includes Anaesthetist fee
An ankle arthroscopy is also used to treat some conditions affecting your ankle.
An ankle arthroscopy can be used to treat several conditions affecting your ankle, including:
At this consultation, your consultant will ask you some questions about your general health and what symptoms you are experiencing. They will examine your ankle, looking for any redness, swelling, visible injury, or deformity. They may apply firm pressure to your ankle to check for areas of pain or tenderness and check how well you can move your ankle.
If you have had previous investigations such as an X-ray, or MRI scan, take them with you so your consultant can examine them. They might organise for you to have one of these on the day of your consultation.
At the end of your appointment, your consultant will decide whether an ankle arthroscopy is suitable for you based on your symptoms, physical examination, and any previous test results. They will explain what happens during the procedure, discuss the risks and benefits of surgery, and tell you what to expect after your surgery and your likely recovery time.
Your first consultation at Circle Health Group is important because it's during this appointment that we get to know you, discuss any concerns you have, answer your questions, and learn about your expectations for surgery.
It's important that you are as comfortable and well-informed as possible before your surgery, so please ask your consultant any questions you may have.
There are many benefits of using arthroscopic surgery over traditional (open) surgery, including:
Before your procedure, your consultant will tell you everything you need to do to prepare for your surgery.
Being prepared for your ankle arthroscopy will help you know what to expect before, during, and after your procedure and hopefully help you feel comfortable and assured about having surgery. Feel free to ask your consultant as many questions as you like before your surgery.
Tell your consultant about any health conditions or allergies you have and any other medications you are taking.
Your consultant may tell you to stop taking some medications such as blood thinners or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) before your operation. This is to reduce the risk of bleeding during your procedure.
If you are having a general anaesthetic, you will not be able to eat or drink anything from midnight on the day of your surgery. You will not be able to drive home after the procedure, either, but we can arrange for a taxi to collect you from hospital, if needed. You can also arrange to be collected by a friend or family member.
You can help prepare for your procedure by being as healthy as possible in the weeks leading up to your surgery. Some things you can do include:
After your ankle arthroscopy, you will have a bulky dressing or splint on your ankle. You may be able to walk straight away after your operation, or you may need to rest and elevate your leg for a period of time - your consultant will tell you for how long. You may be given crutches and a special boot to wear after surgery.
Some things you can do to prepare for after surgery include:
Before your surgery, your ankle will be cleaned with antiseptic to reduce the risk of infection. Your orthopaedic surgeon will scrub their hands and put on a sterile gown, hat, mask, and surgical gloves.
When your anaesthetic has taken effect, your surgeon will make a small incision into your ankle and insert the arthroscope (a small flexible camera). Your ankle may be put under gentle traction (pulled straight) and fluid may be injected into your joint to allow your surgeon to see more clearly. If there are areas that need to be treated, your surgeon can insert medical instruments through a separate incision and carry out repairs such as removing bone fragments and scar tissue, or fusing the joint.
Ankle arthroscopy normally takes between thirty minutes and two hours.
When your surgery is complete, your incisions will be stitched and a sterile dressing and bandage applied.
An ankle arthroscopy is different for everyone and what happens during your surgery will depend on your individual case and your reason for having the procedure. Talk to your consultant about what will happen during your surgery for a more detailed account specific to your needs.
Recovering from surgery is different for everyone and depends on many factors such as your general health, the type of surgery you had, and your age.
Your consultant will give you instructions on what to do after your surgery. You may be able to walk straight away, or you may be given crutches, and have your ankle immobilised in a splint.
Your surgeon may tell you to rest and elevate your leg and give you gentle exercises to do at home. In some cases, you may start physiotherapy after a few weeks to strengthen your muscles and improve your mobility.
When you can go back to work depends on the type of surgery you had, and what kind of job you do. You can expect to be off work for at least one to two weeks after your surgery. Talk to your consultant about when you can expect to go back to work.
You will not be able to drive home from hospital, so ask someone to collect you, or we can arrange for a taxi to collect you if you prefer.
How soon you can drive after your operation depends on the type of procedure you had. As a rule, you can probably drive between one and two weeks after a simple procedure, but it may be as much as three months after an ankle fusion.
Before you drive, make sure you can use the pedals without pain and perform an emergency stop safely.
Talk to your consultant about when you can expect to drive after your surgery.
Recovery from an ankle arthroscopy is different for everyone, and it's important that you recover at your own pace and follow your consultant's instructions carefully.
In general, you can start walking short distances after about a week and resume gentle exercise after around three to four weeks. Your swelling should subside within about three months.
Talk to your consultant about when you can expect to be back to normal after your ankle arthroscopy.
Ankle arthroscopy is a minimally invasive procedure, and the risk of complications is low. But as with all surgery, complications may occur. Your consultant will explain all the possible risks and complications to you before your procedure so that you can make an informed decision.
You will also have a complete physical examination and preoperative tests to make sure you are fit for surgery.
Being well-informed about your surgery and what to do during your recovery will minimise the risk of complications and help speed your recovery.
General risks of surgery include:
Some risks and possible complications specific to ankle arthroscopy include:
Flying can increase swelling, so it isn't advisable to fly for at least 24 to 48 hours after your surgery. If you are planning to fly soon after your procedure, check with your consultant that it is safe to do so.
It's normal to have some oedema (swelling) after your arthroscopy. You can help to reduce the swelling by:
Swelling may take up to three months to subside completely after ankle arthroscopy. If your swelling is severe, getting worse, or not getting better, contact your consultant for advice.
Your dressing normally stays in place for around three days after your surgery. Keep your dressing clean and dry and follow your consultant's instructions about when to remove it after your surgery.
If you would like to see a consultant or learn more about having an ankle arthroscopy, book your appointment today or call a member of our team directly on 0141 300 5009.