Pain and swelling of the ankle joints is no laughing matter, especially if you’re a fitness fanatic. For patients suffering from the painful effects of ankle arthritis, Jeffrey McAlister, DPM, FACFAS, at Phoenix Foot and Ankle Institute in Phoenix offers a number of treatment options to decrease ankle inflammation and reduce pain. Call or book an appointment online today to learn more.
If you notice swelling, inflammation, or pain around your ankle, you may be suffering from ankle arthritis.
While there are more than 100 forms of arthritis, all of them cause pain and swelling of the ankle and foot when left untreated.
When you stand, walk, or run, your feet and ankles provide shock absorption and balance to help you move around properly, but over time, the joints in your feet and ankles can become irritated and inflamed, making it difficult to move around without pain and discomfort.
Osteoarthritis, the most common form of arthritis, occurs when the cartilage surrounding your joints breaks down due to wear and tear. Eventually, the protective barrier surrounding your ankle joints will disappear, causing your bones to start rubbing together.
Some of the most common causes of ankle arthritis include:
Without treatment, ankle arthritis worsens over time, especially in older adults, so it’s important to seek help at the first sign of joint pain and inflammation around your ankle.
Dr. McAlister may recommend a combination of treatments to soothe your ankle pain and inflammation, such as:
Wearing an ankle brace can help provide the right amount of compression and support for your ankle to help reduce joint swelling, inflammation, and pain surrounding your ankle and foot.
A groundbreaking new procedure — stem cell/platelet rich plasma (PRP) injections — encourages tissue repair in your ankle by sending growth factors out to attract healing cells that can reduce pain and inflammation around your affected joints. Most ankle arthritis patients report feeling less pain and swelling within 10 days of treatment.
If nonsurgical treatments are not enough to reduce chronic pain and inflammation around your ankle joints, Dr. McAlister may recommend ankle fusion surgery for severe cases. During the surgery, metal implants are used to hold your ankle joints in place during the healing process. Over the next 8 to 12 weeks, you will slowly begin to walk on your own again.
Another surgical option for reducing the effects of ankle arthritis is arthroplasty, a procedure in which your ankle joint is reconstructed using a prosthesis.
The Stryker STAR is a type of arthroplasty that uses a mobile bearing instead of a fixed one to replace your ankle joint. This offers a higher range of motion and comfort for your ankle.
Call Phoenix Foot and Ankle Institute today or book an appointment online for more information.