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Foot & Ankle Problems Message Board
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Old 07-26-2011, 12:37 AM   #1
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Ankle pain sucks

It's been more than 15 years since I hurt my ankle, and finally ran into a doctor who knew what was wrong. I am really excited believe it or not, the pain just keeps getting worse. I am currently scheduled for the OATS procedure in September. Doctor said this or fuse the ankle, I was like are you crazy there is no choice to the OATS. The damaged area is about 1.2 cm by 2 cm, seems kinda large from what I have been reading. I have been reading many of your feeds and appreciate all the sharing. My son will be here to help me as needed. I really want to return to work a few days after the prcedure, is this likely? I can sit in a wheel chair at work. Any tips, ideas, thoughts, reminders to be ready for or what ever you wish to share.

Thank you

Last edited by rczcraze; 07-26-2011 at 09:48 AM.

 
Old 07-26-2011, 06:17 PM   #2
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Re: Ankle pain sucks

I'm glad you found a doctor who figured out what's going on with your ankle. While 12mmx20mm is sort of large for a talus OCD, from what I've read it's definitely not too large for a successful OATS. You might ask your doctor if you will be getting a single block graft or a mosaicplasty, and whether the donor site will be your knee, tibia, or cadaver. While those factors probably won't affect your return-to-work time, it could affect whether other parts of your body hurt afterward.

I didn't have OATS and cannot predict how quickly you will be able to return to work. Probably depends on how much pain and swelling you have and how much pain medication you're taking. If you can stop taking the opioid-type painkillers after a few days, or if you take them but they don't make you sleepy, you might be able to return to work in a few days using a wheelchair. But I wouldn't count on it. When you do return to work, see if you can make arrangements to elevate and ice your ankle (in the wheelchair?) at the office. Make sure there is a bathroom with an accessible stall and grab bars. Consider whether you should also have crutches or a knee scooter to get around in places where the wheelchair doesn't fit.

 
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Old 08-02-2011, 11:09 PM   #3
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Re: Ankle pain sucks

Thank you for the help, mosaicplasty is what has been described a couple plugs. I believe cadaver is the donor, not sure though. This is all happening through the VA, and I really didn't ask too many questions about the procedure other than description and recovery. I was so excited to get help, not the first time I have been there asking for help. Of course in my reading I have learned this is a realatively new procedure. In Mens Health, magazine in May they had a small note that said they are putting stem cells on top of the donor tissue and expecting full recovery. Maybe we will all have full recoveries soon.

 
Old 08-03-2011, 10:58 PM   #4
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Re: Ankle pain sucks

Yea, I think mosaicplasty would be used for an OCD that large, whether it's your own bone or from a cadaver. My doctor said if my MFx fails, he would recommend a mosaicplasty, but hopefully I won't need it.

I thought fresh cadaver grafts required scheduling around availability. They call when there's a match and schedule your surgery 7-14 days out while the graft is processed and tested. If they already gave you a firm surgery date, I'd guess either it's coming from your own knee/tibia, or the VA has a frozen graft waiting.

I was going to attach and actual photo of a mosaicplasty in progress, but it looked gruesome, so instead here's a hand drawing of a knee mosaicplasty.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg mosaicplasty_drawing.jpg (7.1 KB, 4 views)

Last edited by LivesNearStore; 08-03-2011 at 11:00 PM.

 
Old 08-05-2011, 11:22 PM   #5
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Re: Ankle pain sucks

Nice thanks surgery is in 18 days, i will ask for donor info at preop appt. Begining house prep lowered my bed and making sure routes are cleared.

 
Old 08-06-2011, 10:40 PM   #6
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Re: Ankle pain sucks

I suggest practicing a few days with the crutches before the surgery. I practiced for one day and it was useful, but after the surgery I wished I had practiced part-time for 3 or 4 days, to build up the arm muscles and see what was possible and what wasn't. I didn't get a knee scooter, but many people who get a talus graft find it useful. If your graft comes from your own knee, then not sure if that means you must avoid using a knee scooter for the first few weeks.

Might want to get some reusable ice packs. I thought the flexible gel ones were easier to use than the rigid ones, though it was hard to apply cold to my ankle while it was wrapped in a padded bandage. Assuming you get a malleolar osteotemy, your ankle will probably be in a splint for 7-10 days, then a cast for 4-6 weeks, then a boot or cam walker for some weeks. (Disclaimer--I didn't get a graft so didn't get a cast, only boot.)

 
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Old 08-07-2011, 09:19 PM   #7
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Re: Ankle pain sucks

Thanks for the help, I see the doc next week and I will ask for transportation Items so I can practice. Sometimes I get a bit nervous the way some people talk, I will be completely dependent on others, is this true?

 
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