Rotationplasty: Surgery That Turns An Ankle Into a Knee

Not many people have heard of “rotationplasty,” which is a surgery that is used to turn an ankle into a knee. Developed in 1930 to treat femoral deficiency in a patient with tuberculosis, rotationplasty involves removing the middle part of the leg and reattaching the lower leg to the thigh, but rotated at 180 degrees. The ankle joint then functions as a new knee joint, and the patient is later fitted with a prosthesis. Typically, people with knee tumors are the patients who benefit the most from this type of surgery. It takes approximately six months for the bones in the leg to heal and, following physical therapy, most patients can return to sports activities, work, or school with no restrictions.