How long will I be in the hospital after surgery?
Most patients are in the hospital for one or two days. Some patients have shorter stays in the hospital. However, a small number of patients may stay in the hospital for longer than five days.
Will my activity be restricted after surgery?
Typically, prior to putting any weight on your ankle, you will use crutches or a walker for a minimum of two weeks after surgery. Your doctor will let you know when you can begin putting some of your weight on your ankle. If your surgeon allows, you can put full weight on your ankle about four weeks after the operation. In most cases, your postoperative splint will be changed to a removable boot two weeks after surgery.
Have the materials in the STAR™ ankle been used in the human body before?
Yes, the STAR™ Ankle device uses the same materials (i.e., cobalt chromium alloy, titanium, and polyethylene) that have been used for the last 30 years in artificial hip and knee replacements.
What are the similarities and differences between the STAR™ ankle and fusion?
The STAR™ Ankle replacement is designed to maintain as much of your ankle’s normal range of motion as possible while relieving your pain. Fusing the ankle hopes to relieve your pain by restricting the ankle’s range of motion. Pain is common and occurred at similar rates in STAR™ and ankle fusion patients in a two-year study following surgery. There is also a slightly greater chance for reoperation with the STAR™ Ankle based on the results of this two year study. However, providing ankle motion allows you to perform your daily activities with more normal body motion. It is generally believed that providing ankle motion places less stress on your body as a whole.
What will I be permitted to do after I have recovered from the ankle surgery?
After an ankle replacement, you can do as much walking and swimming as you like. You can also do as much non-impact athletics as you like, such as golf. You should not run, jump, perform heavy lifting or manual labor unless your surgeon allows it. These types of activities may cause the STAR™ Ankle to wear out prematurely, loosen or break. This may require further therapy, including surgery, to correct. Ask your surgeon about specific activities that you are interested in.
What are the similarities and differences between the STAR™ Ankle and other ankle replacements?
During all total ankle replacement surgeries, metal components replace the bone surfaces in your ankle. In the STAR™ Ankle, the two metal parts are separated by a piece of polyethylene (a medical grade plastic) which moves between both metal parts. This polyethylene piece is called a Mobile Bearing, and helps to maintain the normal motion of the ankle as you do daily activities like walking and going up and down stairs. All other ankle implants in the U.S. have the plastic attached to one of the metal parts.