First total ankle replacement for Greenslopes Private Hospital

Sep 24, 2020

Greenslopes Private Hospital is celebrating a surgical milestone with the first total ankle replacement being performed at the Brisbane facility.

Foot and ankle orthopaedic surgeon, Dr David Miller, said he felt honoured and excited to perform the complex procedure, as it marks a new era not only for Greenslopes but for foot surgery more broadly. 

“I performed many total ankle replacements while on my subspeciality training in the United Kingdom. There and in the EU and USA they are certainly becoming more popular. We’re now starting to see more of these procedures performed in Australia too,” Dr Miller said.  

“It’s a complex surgical procedure because of the importance of the alignment of the prosthesis which is absolutely critical to its survivorship and function. You’ve got to get it aligned perfectly.” 

“In the past five years there has been a lot more innovation in prosthesis technology and we’re seeing them function and perform better and survive longer. It can keep patients walking and maintaining their ankle motion which in turn can help them maintain a normal gait or walking pattern,” he said. 

The total ankle replacement was performed on an active 70-year-old patient who had suffered from terrible arthritis to his ankle.  

Dr Miller said the decision to proceed with the replacement, instead of an ankle fusion, was intended to allow the patient to maintain function in his ankle and give him a more normal walking pattern.  

While Dr Miller had performed this surgery overseas, he said he was thrilled to introduce the technique to Greenslopes Private Hospital. 

“Greenslopes and Ramsay Health Care are always very eager to expand surgical techniques and welcome new innovative procedures, and as a surgeon it’s very encouraging to me that they always want to improve the patient experience,” Dr Miller said.