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After Ankle Arthroscopy

After surgery, your joint may be swollen, painful, and stiff. Recovery times can vary. Your surgeon will tell you when to resume activity. If you had a loose body or bone spur removed, you may be able to bear weight when the pain is gone. You may need to wear a surgical boot or cast, limit weight-bearing, and use crutches for some time.

Foot with ghosted-in positions showing foot rotating.
To help with healing, you may be instructed to draw the letters of the alphabet in the air with your feet.

At home

Follow your surgeon’s guidelines for healing:

  • Elevate and ice your ankle.

  • Limit weight-bearing as instructed.

  • Use a bandage to compress your ankle.

  • When you shower, cover your ankle with a plastic bag to keep it dry.

  • Take pain medicine as directed.

  • Don't drive until your surgeon tells you it's OK to do so. 

The checklist below helps remind you what to do after arthroscopy:

☐ Schedule your first follow-up visit after surgery as instructed.

☐ Take care of your incision and bathe as directed.

☐ Complete your physical therapy program.

☐ You can do these activities right away:

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Online Medical Reviewer: L Renee Watson MSN RN
Online Medical Reviewer: Raymond Turley Jr PA-C
Online Medical Reviewer: Thomas N Joseph MD
Date Last Reviewed: 4/1/2020
© 2000-2021 The StayWell Company, LLC. All rights reserved. This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your healthcare professional's instructions.
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Click here for more info on Coronavirus (COVID-19), vaccines, and visitor restrictions.
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Kettering Health Network (ketteringhealth.org)
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