What is Ankle arthritis?

There are many bones and joints that make up the ankle. In many of these joints the ends of the bones are covered with articular cartilage that helps the bones glide smoothly during movement. Joints are surrounded by the synovium, which produces a fluid that lubricates the cartilage and reduces friction.

Ankle arthritis is a condition where the cartilage surfaces that line the ankle joint become thin and eventually wear out completely. Usually, ankle arthritis occurs slowly over a period of years. Narrowing of the ankle joint spaces, in particular between the tibia and the talus bones can be very debilitating and painful.


The most common cause of ankle arthritis is a previous injury, but in some patients it may occur as part of a more widespread condition such as rheumatoid arthritis, haemophilia or gout. Ankle arthritis may flare up due to over activity, stress, cold weather, a change in barometric pressure, an infection or weight gain.


  • Joint swelling, warmth, and redness
  • Feeling of grinding or popping in the ankle joint
  • Ankle may be stiff particularly in the morning or at the beginning of activity
  • Pain with motion
  • Pain that flares up with vigorous activity
  • Tenderness when pressure is applied to the joint
  • Difficulty in walking due to any of the above symptoms


Understanding the underlying causes and properly diagnosing your condition is the first step to treatment. We then provide a holistic approach to helping patients and their families through their surgical journey. Properly supporting you and/or your child, while educating you on the details helps us ensure the most successful outcomes possible. Our hands on, team approach makes patients feel supported throughout the whole treatment process.

To learn more about your condition and receive a diagnosis, schedule a virtual consultation with one of our experienced orthopedic doctors. During this consultation, all your questions will be answered as our specialists guide you through the evaluation process.

Conservative treatment

Physiotherapy, Anti-inflammatory medication, Braces can all be used as conservative methods of treatment. The following injections may also be used:


Cortisone injections


Viscosupplement for joint


Injections for joints

Surgical treatment


Ankle arthroscopy


Articulated ankle distraction

Case study

30+ year old female with ankle pain due to non-well healed fracture


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Highly specialized expert care at CLLC

At the Canadian Limb Lengthening Centre we offer complex deformity correction and limb lengthening surgeries performed by experienced surgeons with the most up to date technologies. When it comes to your care, and treatment of deformity and limb length discrepancy, our surgeons have extensive training and experience.