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Intermediate to Long-Term Outcomes of the STAR Total Ankle Replacement: The Patient Perspective
James A. Nunley, MD1; Adam M. Caputo, MD1; Mark E. Easley, MD1; Chad Cook, PT, PhD2
1 Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, DUMC 2923, Duke University, Durham, NC 27710. E-mail address for J. Nunley: nunle001@mc.duke.edu
2 Department of Physical Therapy, Walsh University, 2020 East Maple Street, North Canton, OH 44720
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Investigation performed at Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina

Disclosure: One or more of the authors received payments or services, either directly or indirectly (i.e., via his or her institution), from a third party in support of an aspect of this work. In addition, one or more of the authors, or his or her institution, has had a financial relationship, in the thirty-six months prior to submission of this work, with an entity in the biomedical arena that could be perceived to influence or have the potential to influence what is written in this work. No author has had any other relationships, or has engaged in any other activities, that could be perceived to influence or have the potential to influence what is written in this work. The complete Disclosures of Potential Conflicts of Interest submitted by authors are always provided with the online version of the article.

Copyright © 2012 by The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, Inc.
J Bone Joint Surg Am, 2012 Jan 04;94(1):43-48. doi: 10.2106/JBJS.J.01613
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The purpose of the present study was to document the patient self-reported improvements in quality of life, function, and overall impairment scores, as well as the improvement in the clinically derived outcome scores, following a Scandinavian Total Ankle Replacement (STAR) arthroplasty performed for the treatment of end-stage ankle arthritis.


All patients who underwent a Scandinavian Total Ankle Replacement arthroplasty from July 1998 through February 2008 were prospectively followed and retrospectively reviewed. All surgical procedures were performed by a single surgeon. Preoperatively and at subsequent follow-up visits, patients were assessed with (1) a visual analog scale (VAS) score for pain, (2) the Short Form-36 (SF-36) quality-of-life scale, (3) the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society (AOFAS) hindfoot scale and subscales, (4) the Buechel-Pappas pain and function scores, and (5) the ankle range of motion. Additional measures that were recorded included (1) concomitant surgical procedures during the initial ankle replacement, (2) revision surgery during the follow-up period, and (3) any additional surgical procedures. Revision was defined as failure of either the tibial or the talar metallic component that required removal of a metallic implant for any reason.


Eighty-two consecutive patients were evaluated. The duration of follow-up ranged from twenty-four to 108 months (mean, sixty-one months; median, sixty months). During the follow-up period, three patients died and six patients moved out of the region. The latter six patients were followed by another surgeon group, and their data were included. Eight patients were lost to follow-up after twelve months. There were significant improvements in all outcome categories between the preoperative and postoperative evaluations. The most compelling finding of the present study involved the marked improvement in terms of the self-reported measures of impairments, quality of life, pain, and function.


Total ankle arthroplasty with the Scandinavian Total Ankle Replacement prosthesis was associated with significant improvements in terms of pain, function, and quality of life after intermediate to long-term follow-up.

Level of Evidence: 

Therapeutic Level IV. See Instructions for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.

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    These activities have been planned and implemented in accordance with the Essential Areas and policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) through the joint sponsorship of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, Inc. The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians.
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