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September 13, 2019 - TCO

Quality & Outcomes: Total Ankle Replacement

At Twin Cities Orthopedics, we have a responsibility to our patients, their families, and our communities as a whole, to make health care better for everyone. That’s why for the past several years we’ve been analyzing surgical outcomes, gathering feedback about your experiences, and putting the data to good use.

About Our Data

After every experience with TCO, we kindly ask our patients to provide feedback. We ask about their overall experience, and whether or not they would recommend us to family and friends. We ask them to tell us about their pain and mobility before and after surgery, so we can monitor their progress and customize their care experience.

Thanks to the generosity of patients who filled out forms after their visits, we’ve collected nearly half a million patient surveys. That’s an incredible amount of information, and we’re grateful for every patient who has contributed.

We’re using this data to make improvements across our practice and elevate the experience for everyone at TCO.

Why Data Matters

Healthcare is evolving, and people deserve to be in the driver’s seat of their own care. At TCO, we’re developing tools so patients can make more educated decisions about their health. By publishing data about surgical outcomes and patient satisfaction, we hope prospective patients will feel empowered to:

  • Ask their physicians about surgical outcomes, and feel more prepared
  • Ask their providers about how much procedures cost, and feel more in control
  • Ask their families and friends about who they would recommend, and feel more confident
  • Ask their employers how they make healthcare decisions, and feel more involved
  • Ask tough questions, and hold our industry accountable

Change doesn’t happen overnight, and we’ll never stop trying to earn people’s trust, but 98% of our patients would recommend TCO to family and friends, which tells us we’re on the right track.

Learn More: Total Ankle Replacement Surgery

“If your ankle is negatively affecting your quality of life, making it hard or even impossible to work or enjoy recreational activity, then something needs to be done.”Dr. Chris Coetzee

Patient-reported outcome data for total ankle arthroplasty, more commonly known as total ankle replacement, tells us that 97.03% of patients report reduced pain one year after surgery. In other words, you can be very confident you’ll have positive results if you choose to have this procedure.

About the Procedure

  • Total ankle replacement surgery is a proven treatment for severe ankle arthritis that negatively affects quality of life. Common causes of ankle arthritis include fractures, sprains, and rheumatoid arthritis.
  • To reduce the risk of complications, patients must be at least 50 years old, with a body mass index (BMI) of no more than 36, to qualify for this procedure.
  • During the procedure, the damaged bone and tissue is removed, and a new implant takes its place.
  • The implant is made of titanium and cobalt chrome metals on the tibial and talus sides of the joint. Between those two components is a polyethylene liner that helps the artificial joint parts glide against each other.
  • Implants are expected to last 15-20 years.

What to Expect

  • Patients are typically 50% weight-bearing right away, but most people use a knee scooter for the first six weeks to make it easier to get around.
  • After six weeks, most patients are full weight-bearing.
  • At this point, most patients are cleared for low-impact activities including tennis, golf, walking, and biking. Patients should avoid long distance running, basketball or other high-impact activities.
  • Although every patient is different, research shows an average of approximately 92% pain relief.

Special thanks to Dr. Coetzee for his insights into the procedure.

If you or a loved one is considering total ankle replacement surgery, or would like to speak to a TCO foot and ankle specialist, we’re here to help.