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Arthrodesis of Foot and Ankle—Open Surgery
What is it? Overview Usage Side Effects and Warnings

What is Arthrodesis of Foot and Ankle—Open Surgery?

Arthrodesis fuses (welds) together the two bones that form a joint. There is no longer movement in the joint after the procedure. One or more related joints may be done at the same time.

Arthrodesis of Foot and Ankle
Arthrodesis of Foot and Ankle
© 2009 Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.

Ankle arthrodesis is used to relieve disabling ankle pain or deformity caused by poorly healed fractures, arthritis , infections, or developmental defects.

Satisfactory results, including good pain relief, are achieved in most patients. Most can wear ordinary shoes. Some will benefit from specially fitted footwear.

Possible Complications

Complications are rare, but no procedure is completely free of risk. If you are planning to have arthrodesis, your doctor will review a list of possible complications, which may include:

  • Failure of the joint to fuse
  • Poor alignment of the joint, causing pain and/or an altered gait
  • Need for repeat surgery
  • Infection
  • Bleeding
  • Nerve damage

Factors that may increase the risk of complications include:

  • Smoking
  • Infection
  • Some chronic diseases

Call Your Doctor

After you leave the hospital, contact your doctor if any of the following occurs:

  • Bleeding or discharge from your incision(s). This may show up as staining of your cast.
  • Signs of infection, including fever and chills
  • Increasing or severe pain that is not...