Immediately following surgery, patients will be relocated to a recovery room and monitored.This will typically involve wound care, pain management, watching for signs of any possible complications, and gradual waking from anesthesia, if anesthesia was used. Patients of intensive procedures, such as ankle arthroplasty, will likely stay in the hospital for several days, while patients undergoing more minor operations may be discharged within a few hours.
Both at the hospital and at home, the recovery process will involve a number of steps and factors to enable fast healing. Assistive devices (such as wheelchairs, braces, and crutches) may be needed to assist with weight-bearing during recovery, while lifestyle alterations (such as weight loss or reduction of high-impact activity) may be advised for long-term foot and ankle health. A personalized physical therapy regimen of strength-building exercises and stretches will be central to the recovery process.
The specifics of the surgical recovery process for foot and ankle patients is largely dependent upon the particular type of surgery they have undergone, as well as the severity of their condition. As such, the length of the recovery timeline will vary from patient to patient. For most foot and ankle patients, recovery will span from several weeks to several months and activities will be gradually re-introduced over the course of the recovery process.