For Mark Davies, Matthew Solan & James Davis at St John & St Elizabeth Hospital and OneWelbeck

For Martin Klinke at London Bridge, Cromwell Hospital, Chiswick Outpatients, New Victoria Hospital & One Welbeck

Jackie Speckley

When I finally decided that I could no longer tolerate the pain in my ankle due to severe arthritis and deterioration in the joint as a result of polio, Mark Davies assured me that ankle fusion was the way to go and that I would be pain free as a result of the procedure. But would I still be able to wear walking boots and enjoy long hikes? Mark told me that one of his other patients tackled Mount Kilimanjaro after his operation, and whilst I don’t aspire to such dizzy heights, I still wanted to continue my active life without having to resort to handfuls of painkillers.

Nine months later, I was climbing a steep cliff path in Devon wearing my boots for the first time since the fusion, absolutely painfree. Whilst it might not have been Kilimanjaro it certainly felt like a huge achievement to me.

I can’t recommend this operation and the after care provided by Mark Davies and his team at St John and St Elizabeth more highly. The whole experience went very smoothly, my recovery was right on schedule and I feel that I have many hiking years ahead of me. I would advise anyone considering this procedure to go for it, even if Kilimanjaro is not on their bucket list!