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Coordinated Health operating room nurse Renee Trotta suffered from chronic ankle pain for much of her life. When she was 17-years-old she was in an accident that left her with a broken ankle that required extensive surgery. Over the years her ankle pain worsened until the point where she wasn’t even able to work without being in constant pain. “It was always stiff and I couldn’t really bend down. I had trouble walking and even standing for any period of time,” she says.
The final straw for Trotta was when she was unable to get her shoes on or walk without a limp. At that point she scheduled an appointment with Coordinated Health Foot and Ankle Surgeon, Stephen Brigido, DPM. Trotta knew Dr. Brigido well since they have worked together for over ten years and says she felt confident he would be able to help her.
An X-ray and MRI showed that Trotta suffered from severe end stage arthritis. “It was bone-on-bone, she had limited motion and she had some free floating bone fragments and complete loss of cartilage,” says Dr. Brigido. He told Trotta that she had two choices – she could either have an ankle fusion or an ankle replacement.
Ultimately, Trotta decided to have an ankle replacement. “An ankle replacement would give me more mobility and less stiffness than the fusion,” she says.
Dr. Brigido explains that the surgery itself is generally about 45 to 60 minutes and is done as an inpatient procedure. He also says that it is not an overly complicated procedure. “The procedure is very smooth and the technology has evolved over the last 10 to 15 years beautifully so it’s very straightforward for the surgeon to implant the device,” he says.
Following the surgery, Trotta was non-weight bearing for about three weeks in order to let the incision heal. Once her stitches came out she began a four month course of physical therapy.
Trotta was surprised at how quickly she noticed results from her surgery. “I was pain free from the moment I got out of surgery so rehab was amazing. The most frustrating part of the experience was not being able to do anything for three weeks because I was non-weight bearing,” she says.
Now, almost a year after her surgery Trotta couldn’t be happier with her results. “My life now is completely pain free. I can walk up stairs with no problem, I can walk faster, I can move a lot better. It’s just the best experience I ever had and I would absolutely recommend Dr. Brigido for ankle replacements,” she says.