Ankle arthroscopy

I’m having keyhole surgery to remove a bone spur in my ankle joint within the next few weeks. The doc said that I’ll be on crutches for two weeks and won’t run for 3months, won’t jump for 6months. This seems a long time to me considering the stories I’ve heard of other people’s surgery.

Has anyone got any stories, experience advice on ankle ops??


I’ve had lateral reconstructive ankle surgery and spur removal. The doc put me straight into a walking boot for 6 weeks. The doc didn’t prescribe any formal rehab but I did a bunch on my own. I was able to jog about 3 weeks after getting out of the boot and played competitive flag football 6 months after surgery with no problems, but truth be told I wasn’t confident in the ankle until a year later.

Lessons I learned: Don’t run until you can walk perfectly. It’s worth repeating, don’t run until you can walk in perfect stride. I didn’t wait for full ROM and ran on it way too early. Also, if you spend any time in a walking boot get with a chiro after it’s off. My hips/SI joint were a mess walking around off-kilter for a month and a half.

Thanks for the reply and good advice!

That sounds like a quick recovery from that sort of op! I think walking boots have been abandoned over here… they are hot on leaving ankles free and going on cruches. The surgeon said I could move the ankle about straight after but no weight for two weeks.

Yea, I’ve heard bad stories about coming back too soon even when the ankle feels fine!

What did you do in your time out to keep fit? What did your rehab look like, I’ll be using NHS physio and the physio on Campus…

I had knee, not ankle surgery but rehab to walking and beyond is probably similar. Check my recent journal entries for two modalities that have helped me – Feldenkrais and Structural Integration/Rolfing.

Since my surgery was pretty invasive I wasn’t allowed to move my ankle for 6 weeks but was encouraged to bear weight as soon as I could handle it.

What shocked me is they didn’t prescribed any rehab. These were the literal commands “When you can walk, jog. When you can jog, run. When you can run, run circles.” I’ve had friends with similar experiences, I think our health insurance over here is cutting corners.

So I did my own rehab, basically treating it like a sprained ankle. First I did ROM drills like spelling the alphabet with my foot. Then light bungee drills to strengthen muscles. I also worked the small muscles with things like picking up objects with my toes. For balance I did the progression: Stand on foot > one foot eyes closed > balance board two feet > balance board two feet eyes closed > balance board one foot > balance board one foot eyes closed. I also found that once I was mobile walking forwards, backwards, sideways, etc. with a medium heavy sled worked well.

As for fitness while immobile I could do all upper body weights and abs. Since I was in a boot I found I could also do leg curls, leg extensions, and hypers. I was able to do kettlebell/dumbbell swings to get the heart rate up. If I did it again I’d add in standing med ball throws and if I had access to a pool add swimming and deep water sprints once I was cleared to be in water.

Thanks, has been very informative so far :slight_smile:

Interesting, this is the way I’ve always treated ankle sprains succesfully. However the doctor has said the total opposite to me, he said the worst thing I can do is impact to early so as not to inflame the area causing more scar-tissue. Like I said though, my ankle sprains have always recovered quicker through puching them… it seems the same for other injuries aswell…
I may ask if I can have a boot soley for the purpose of GHraise and hamcurls/leg extensions, although I can’t see him buying it… Ill have to fashion something.

How did the injury happen?

This particular bone spur is quite common but mine has got bigger over-time. I first started clicking against another bone when I was 15, then it started to inflame the ankle. Couldn’t high jump anymore at 17, couldn’t triple at 19…