Hemophilic ankle arthropathy

Clin Orthop Relat Res. 1996 Jul;(328):39-45. doi: 10.1097/00003086-199607000-00009.


Ankle arthropathy remains a frequent source of disability in the hemophilic patient. Bleeding into the ankle most commonly commences in the second decade, and, once established as a target joint, progressive damage leads to significant pain, stiffness, and deformity affecting general mobility and leisure and occupational pursuits. Review of cohorts of hemophilic patients at the Royal Free Hospital has monitored this deterioration and there is no evidence that, despite improvements in medical treatment, the pattern of insidious decline in hindfoot function has changed during the past 4 decades. Based on these observations, a combined clinical and radiologic scoring system has been developed, incorporating ankle specific features, such as talar tilt, tibial osteophytes, and talar dome flattening, which give a better correlation than traditional systems with objective measures, such as treadmill walking. There is no substitution for prophylactic treatment in arresting ankle function decline, and surgical interventions are rare. However, the types of potential procedures are numerous and choices must be made according to the degree of disability and state of overall damage to the joint and adjacent soft tissues.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Ankle Joint* / physiopathology
  • Hemarthrosis / etiology*
  • Hemarthrosis / physiopathology
  • Hemarthrosis / therapy
  • Hemophilia A / complications*
  • Hemophilia A / physiopathology
  • Humans
  • Range of Motion, Articular