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Ankle Stabilization with Internal Brace
Dr. James Chen, M.D. - In San Francisco, CA

The Brostrom procedure for tightening anterior-inferior talofibular ligament has long been the standard treatment for ankle instability. Augmentation of this repair with Internal Brace has shown better results with faster recovery. The Internal Brace procedure implants a biocomposite anchor into the talus and fibula. A strong tape called Fiber Tape is used as the “Internal Brace” between the anchors. This Internal Brace serves as both a scaffold over which the native ligament can heal and it structurally serves as a new artificial ligament itself.

Common Questions about Ankle Stabilization with Internal Brace

How does instability happen and when should I consider surgery?

Ankle instability occurs when ligaments related to the ankle are stretched or in some cases torn due to a sprain. Surgery for this ailment should be considered if the ankle is unstable and sprain easily and if physical therapy and bracing do not alleviate symptoms of instability.

What is the surgical process like?

Ankle stabilization with the Brostrom procedure is when the torn or stretched ligaments are sewn together. The internal brace is a thick suture that is added to augment the repair and acts as an internal “seat-belt” to prevent any stretching of the repair. The internal brace is anchored into the bones of the ankle with absorbable screws.

What is the recovery process like?

Following the surgery, patients are placed in a cast and use crutches to avoid weight bearing on the ankle. After two weeks, the patient is transitioned into a removable walking boot and then by another two weeks are transitioned into an ankle brace. Patients start attending physical therapy when instructed by their physician and continue for the duration of their recovery process.

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