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Raised line with lumps on the outside of ankle, paining, burning, radiating to knee. ankle replacement surgery done. Treatment ?

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Orthopaedic Surgeon
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I had a total ankle replacement 10 years ago, the past few weeks a raised line with lumps has developed on the outside of the ankle. The pain and burning is severe and radiates up to the knee. It looks like a 4 or 5 inch scar but the surgery scar is on top of my ankle. No recent ankle injury as far as I know. Any ideas? Age 52, 5'6" 350lbs
Posted Sun, 22 Apr 2012 in Back Pain
Answered by Dr. Atul Wankhede 1 hour later

Thanks for posting your query.

It is difficult to imagine the raised line with lumps, nevertheless it sounds abnormal and needs evaluation.

The things one needs to consider is whether there is a swelling in ankle, local warmth, visible redness, difficulty in movements and is something oozing out of the line. If its yes for most of these then we are dealing with an 'infection' of your prosthesis. In addition you might have a low grade fever running.

If its not the aforesaid things, then may be the implant has begun to fail. To reach a diagnosis we need an xray.

There are many reasons for these symptoms to occur besides these common conditions I mentioned, like implant metal reaction, synovitis, various skin lesions and so forth.

In my opinion, you will need a physical examination done by your operating surgeon.

In the meantime you may take antiinflammatory medicines for a few days. Give your ankle the compression of a crepe bandage and keep the leg elevated as far as possible. Try hot and cold fomentation. Your weight also needs reduction.

Hope I answered your question. If there is something else I can help you with, feel free to ask. I'm available for follow up.

Good luck.

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