Total Ankle Arthroplasty: 1st Post-op

  1. You may shower tonight, letting soapy water run over your incision(s) and patting them dry with a towel. You should avoid submerging the leg (bath, pool, hot tub, etc.) for at least one week.
  2. You will continue strict non-weightbearing in the boot for 2 more weeks. After 2 weeks, you will start progressive weight bearing in boot. Please refer to the separate handout.
  3. Use an ace bandage or a thick sock to prevent the boot from rubbing on the incision(s).
  4. You will wear the boot at all times (including sleeping), except for the following:
    • Bathing, showering
    • Exercises
    • In a completely controlled environment, for the purpose of icing
  5. You will start doing exercises for the ankle to maximize your post-op flexibility. You will do these twice daily, once in the morning and once in the evening:
    • Write the alphabet with your foot. Do two repetitions.
    • Stretch the Achilles by placing a towel across the ball of your foot and pulling up. Hold each stretch for a five-count and do five repetitions.
  6. You will continue to ice and elevate the leg as much as possible. Elevating the leg above the level of the heart will reduce the amount of time required to bring down the swelling.
  7. You should continue taking the blood clot prevention medication (aspirin or equivalent) as prescribed until you are at least 4 weeks post-op.
  8. Formal physical therapy will begin at 4 weeks post-op. A referral will be provided today in clinic.
  9. I would like to see you back in 2 weeks for an incision check.
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About Mark Reed

Mark Reed, MD Dr. Mark Reed is a board-certified orthopedic surgeon providing specialty care of all foot and ankle disorders. He treats both adolescents and adults with a special focus on sports-related injuries, including ankle instability, cartilage lesions, and Achilles tendon injuries.