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"What are the negative, long-term effects that my Calcaneus osteotomy will have on me as I age?"

ZocdocAnswersWhat are the negative, long-term effects that my Calcaneus osteotomy will have on me as I age?


I am a 20 year old male college student living in Chicago. I played high school football and suffered a serious lower leg injury that caused me to have surgical repairs. My posterior tibial tendon was damaged significantly and I have had 2 surgeries to repair it. During my last surgery, I had an osteotomy performed on my Calcaneus bone to help correct an awkward gate that I had developed. I am just curious what the long-term effects of this procedure will be, as I am only 20 and already experience pain in my heel when standing for extended periods or am in the cold for more than a few minutes.


I am sorry to hear that you have had so many problems following this sports injury. Fortunately it sounds like you have been able to preserve function for the most part. It will be important to have continued followup of this injury with your orthopedic doctor as well as physical therapy. This is because the most common complication of these types of injuries and repairs is stiffness and loss of mobility in the joint (in this case the ankle). Having continued physical therapy can optimize your changes to keep your mobility up. Also, if you develop significant recurring scarring you may need a repeat surgical procedure, which your orthopedic doctor would be able to decide. In terms of other long term complications over your life, the most likely thing is that you will develop arthritis in this joint. In fact, pain with standing or pain when in the cold may be early signs of arthritis. Arthritis is common in joints that have been damaged, and there is not much you can do to fix it. However, you can prevent worsening deterioration by stay fit, keeping a healthy weight, and avoiding high impact exercise routines that cause more stress on the joint.

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