TAR Surgery Photo-1633342583438
The woman was able to walk again after the surgery at Himchan Joint and Spine Centre, University Hospital of Sharjah Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: A 66-year-old woman has her damaged ankle successfully replaced with an artificial metal implant at the Himchan Joint and Spine Centre, University Hospital of Sharjah (UHS).

Orthopaedic surgeons said they carried out Total Ankle Replacement (TAR) surgery for the woman suffering from end-stage ankle arthritis.

The team lead by Dr Seung Jun Park, consultant orthopaedic surgeon at the centre, was able to remove the patient’s damaged ankle joint and replace it with an artificial metal implant in the procedure, also known as Total Ankle Arthoplasty.

What is TAR?

TAR is a joint replacement surgery. In the case of ankle arthritis, other operations such as Ankle Fusion Surgery ,are recommended. However, recent medical developments have pointed out that TAR is a better treatment since the ankle fusion procedure runs the risk of fusing the tibia and talus, posing a higher risk of complications and discomfort during physical activities.

Dr Ali Obaid Al Ali, UHS CEO and member of the board of trustees, said: “The successful completion of our first TAR operation at Himchan-UHS reflects our advanced facilities and highly capable orthopaedic experts, proving our readiness to treat our patients, even those with uncommon conditions.”

Planning for surgery

Dr Seung Jun Park

Dr Park said: “To ensure the success of the TAR surgery, we needed to properly implant an artificial joint, which will remain in the body throughout the patient’s whole lifetime. We took every factor into consideration, including the patient’s age and activity level to come up with the most ideal implant and equipment for best results.”

‘Unbearable pain’

The patient had reported to the centre complaining of unbearable pain, swelling, and deformity on her ankle, which prevented her from walking normally. After consultation with the hospital’s orthopaedic experts, it was confirmed that the patient was suffering from end-stage ankle arthritis and needed a surgery.

Don’t ignore ankle pain

The patient was able to walk after the surgery. Follow-up physiotherapy sessions also helped ensure fast recovery considering her age, the hospital said. Moreover, the surgical procedure was able to resolve the pain that she was feeling on her ankle.

Dr Park said: “We recommend patients to consult a physician as soon as possible to receive an accurate diagnosis especially in the earliest stage. That way, they will be able to recover fast and prevent themselves from undergoing invasive operations.”