TARVA trial

The TARVA (Total Ankle Replacement versus Arthrodesis) Investigators meeting was held prior to the BOFAS AGM.

TARVA stands for Total Ankle Replacement Versus Arthrodesis. The TARVA trial is a clinical trial for patients with ankle arthritis that are considering surgery.

The main surgical treatments for end-stage ankle arthritis are ankle arthrodesis or total ankle replacement (TAR). Approximately 3,000 patients undergo ankle arthrodesis or TAR in the NHS each year. Both treatments are available on the NHS, and both have been reported to have good results. Some studies suggest that TAR restores a more natural walking pattern than ankle fusion but other studies have suggested that the need for further surgery is higher with TAR than with fusion. Information on all TARs implanted in the NHS has been captured on the National Joint Registry since 2010, but no similar national registry exists for ankle fusion. There has never been a published randomized trial directly comparing the two procedures.

The TARVA trial will compare TAR with ankle arthrodesis, using a patient reported walking/standing functional score as the primary outcome. The trial design will not restrict surgeons to a specific type of implant (although only modern implants will be included) or a particular fusion surgical technique within each randomised intervention arm, providing a comparison of these two treatments that reflects usual clinical practice. The results will provide high quality evidence to help patients and their surgeons to choose between the two procedures, and inform commissioning decisions in the NHS.

Visit the TARVA website for further information.

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Categories: Ankle and News.