The upper ankle is a highly complicated joint, which reacts quickly to small changes, such as incorrect stressing, poor posture or as a consequence of accidents. As a result the cartilage of the joint may suffer by early degeneration and swelling may occur in the synovial membrane, accompanied by effusion. On the inner side of the anklebone, sections of bone and cartilage can die off as a result of reduced blood circulation (osteochondrosis dissecans).
The procedures are preferably carried out arthroscopically. Through two small incisions a tiny camera and pipe containing the sterile solution are inserted. This allows a clear view of the surface structures for a highly accurate procedure and assessment of the condition of the joint. Die irritated synovial membrane can be removed with a rotating shaver. The cartilage surfaces are attended by using special shaver attachments. This procedure can additionally be accompanied by drilling and refilling damaged cartilage.
The upper ankle joint is often affected by the consequences of accidents – a breakage of the inner or outer ankle bones resulting in wrong positioning, requires operative repositioning and osteosynthesis with pins/plates. We always carry out such procedures with the added security of an imager.
Another typical ankle procedure is the operation and reconstruction of the lateral ligament. The procedure is seldom carried out in cases of recent injury. However, in cases of repeated distorsions of the ankle, the joint can be reinforced through peroneal tendoplasty.
Even after total deterioration of the joint, there is still opportunity for an operative solution: either the anklebone can be fused with the shinbone (arthrodesis) or in order to maintain joint mobility a joint replacement (endoprosthesis) is possible.