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Date of last update: 8/21/2017.

Forum Name: Rheumatology Topics

Question: Ankle Pain post arthoscopic surgery

 JustLee - Sat May 08, 2004 10:05 am

I will try to keep this as brief and too the point as possible. 12/24/03 I was in a car accident which caused damage to my ankle that at the time was N.O.S. After a consult with an orthopedic surgeon, x-rays and a ct-scan, it was found that I had, had bone spurs that were broken off from the force of the accident. The debris was lodging in the ankle joint, causing it to lock up, and giving me intense sharp pains. I had arthoscopic surgery to remove the debris on Jan 9, 2004. Despite doing all I was instructed to do post surgery, I am still having major pain when I stand or walk for any amount of time at all. The ortho surgeon did another x-ray, and could only find that the cartilage had reduced. I am wondering if there is ANY explaination for this pain? it's making it difficult if not impossible to work. (Note: the ankle was totally NONE symptomatic prior to the surgery)

 Dr. Russell M - Thu May 27, 2004 12:00 am

User avatar Hi!

Am sorry if I misunderstood what you've written; but it seems contradictory that you say you did have intense pain before the arthroscopic surgery, and then to say that you were totally 'none symptomatic' before surgery. Were you asymptomatic before surgery or did you suffer from intense pains?

Kindly clarify.

 JustLee - Thu May 27, 2004 9:50 am

I'm very sorry for the confusion. Please forgive my cluttered thinking. Prior to the car accident on 12-24-03, the ankle was non-symptomatic. Immediately following the accident there was intense pain in the ankle. That subsided after a couple days, but then the locking feeling started. It felt as if something was getting lodged in the ankle joint. Which it in fact was. Apparently the force of the accident caused bone spurs (which I was totally unaware I had) to break off, and they were getting stuck in the ankle joint. That is why the surgeon did the procedure; to remove the debris.

Does that help to clarify? Please let me know.

 Dr. Russell M - Fri May 28, 2004 12:13 pm

User avatar Hi!

There can be many causes for continued pain after injury. Crush injury may produce nerve kinking or partial damage to the nerves, which may be producing the pain. On a 0 to 10 pain scale, how much would you rate your pain on different times of the day for a typical week. Are you taking any medications? If so, how much did the pain scale go down after being on the meds? Can you describe your pain? Does your pain keep you from sleeping/working/moving about?

 JustLee - Fri May 28, 2004 8:03 pm

Unless I'm walking the pain is normally minimal, scale rated at 1-2. When I walk for any amount of time longer than 5 minutes, the pain comes and goes from a sharp intense pain of 10+, to just a constant ache of around 7. The most common is the constant ache of 7 (again, this is when walking). I do not work as a result of this injury, coupled with the work restrictions I was already on due to having a bad knee on the other leg. The pain no longer bothers my sleep as it did for the first month after the surgery.
I normally do not take any medication for the pain, however when I do it is Ibuprofen. At most it prevents the pain from getting worse, though it does not lessen it. I do have Loritab, however it makes me feel completely out of it and unable to function (as do most pain killers) so I do not take that.
The pain's discription is a bit odd (to me any way) It feels as if a bone is broken (none are), and there are times now, when I have a burning sensation going up my shin (like shin splints). This burning sensation has been happening more often in the last month, and is more persistant. Meaning, it doesn't stop once I sit down as the 10+ pain does.
I do hope this has helped rather than to confuse you.
 Dr. Russell M - Sat May 29, 2004 9:10 am

User avatar Hi!

In your position, even I wouldn't take pain medications more than my body would be comfortable taking. If I knew when my pain can be triggered, I'd probably take my favorite pain med half an hour before the triggering activity. Rather than decreasing the expected pain, I'd want not to expect it at all.

From your latter description of pain, I would imagine you to be suffering from neuropathic pain lately, for which the normal analgesics may not be sufficient. Do discuss with your doctor regarding medicines for such pain, next time.


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