Scandinavian Total Ankle Replacement: 15-Year Follow-up

Foot Ankle Int. 2018 Feb;39(2):135-142. doi: 10.1177/1071100717738747.


Background: Over the past decade, total ankle arthroplasty (TAA) has become a mainstay in the treatment of end-stage ankle arthritis. Currently in its fourth generation, the Scandanavian Total Ankle Replacement (STAR) is the only 3-piece mobile bearing ankle prosthesis available in the United States. Our current study reports implant survivorship at 15 years and patient outcomes for a subset of these survivors available for study.

Methods: Eighty-four TAAs were performed between 1998 and 2000. Metal component survivorship at 15 years was calculated with a Kaplan-Meier curve. Twenty-four (29%) of 84 patients were available for participation with a minimum 15-year follow-up. Any radiographic changes were documented. All additional procedures and complications were recorded. Clinical findings, self-reported performance and pain evaluations, and AOFAS ankle/hindfoot scores were noted.

Results: Metal implant survival was 73% at 15 years. Of the 24 patients available for clinical evaluation, 18 of 24 patients (70.7%) had no change in prosthetic alignment from the immediate postoperative radiograph. Only 1 subtalar fusion was required for symptomatic adjacent joint arthritis. Three patients sustained a broken polyethylene component. AOFAS scores improved from an average of 39.6 points preoperatively, to an average of 71.6. More than half (52.4%) of patients with retained implants required an additional surgical procedure; 3 required 2 additional procedures. The average time to subsequent procedure was 10.2 years.

Conclusion: Our small cohort demonstrated STAR ankles with retention at 9 years were highly likely to survive to 15 years, and patients continued to have significant improvement in pain relief and minimal decrease in function. At 15 years from TAA, metal survivorship was 73%. As with all ankle replacements, supplementary procedures were common.

Level of evidence: Level IV, case series.

Keywords: ankle; arthritis; arthroplasty; outcome studies.

MeSH terms

  • Ankle Joint / surgery*
  • Arthrodesis / adverse effects*
  • Arthroplasty, Replacement, Ankle / adverse effects*
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Joint Prosthesis / adverse effects*
  • Radiography