A 41-year-old member asked:
Disclaimer

are the plates and screws used to fix a broken ankle permanent?

3 doctor answers
Dr. Mark Bromson
33 years experience Orthopedic Surgery
Yes: Most plates and screws used to fix a broken ankle are meant to be permanent; however, there is no harm in removing the hardware if it causes problems. Sometimes the hardware is prominent under the skin, or may interfere with motion; in those cases the hardware can be removed. In some types of ankle fractures, a temporary screw is inserted, and this is generally removed after a few months.
Answered on Sep 8, 2019
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5 thanks
Dr. David Bloome
24 years experience Orthopedic Surgery
Yes: The implants used to stabilize a fractured ankle are made to stay in the body forever. The implants, however, are sometimes removed if there are problems (prominent, infection, fracture doesn't heal).
Answered on Mar 20, 2018
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5 thanks
Dr. Steven Bernstein
31 years experience Orthopedic Foot and Ankle Surgery
Hardware: Can go either way. Depends on if the hardware is bothersome after you heal the fracture. Plates and screws are used to hold the bones in place til the fracture heals. Once healed, the hardware is useless... Consult your doc if you feel you want the hardware removed.
Answered on Feb 5, 2019
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