Our ankles are complex and sturdy joints that do an awful lot of work. The bones, ligaments and tendon comprising our ankles allow for many of the movements of the foot required for our everyday activities and recreational pursuits. Because they are called upon to perform so many tasks, unfortunately they can be prone to injury. Our podiatrist at Princeton Regional Foot and Ankle Associates specializes in all matters of the foot and ankle, and urges our patients to come in for a visit when pain or discomfort of the ankles does not resolve quickly.
Sprains and fractures of the ankle are common, painful, and it can often be difficult to tell them apart. Sprains occur when those bands of soft tissue known as the ligaments get strained, usually on the outside of the ankle, due to a fall or sudden twist. The severity of the pain depends on whether the ligament is stretched or torn. Ankle fractures occur when a bone has partially or completely broken, often from the ankle rolling inward or outward. Weakness of the ankle can contribute to either injury, and, yes, a fracture and a sprain can indeed happen at the same time.
Making an early diagnosis about whether the ankle has been sprain or fractured is critical to properly addressing the injury. Besides conducting a thorough, hands-on examination, our podiatrist may require x-rays to determine the type and severity of the damage. A variety of non-surgical steps may require the patient to rest, apply ice, use a compression wrap and keep the injured foot elevated to control swelling. Immobilization and medication may be prescribed, and if surgery is indicated, our podiatrist is fully trained and experienced in procedures to repair the foot and ankle.
If you’ve suffered an ankle injury, or feel your weak ankles are putting you at risk, don’t hesitate to visit our podiatrist at Princeton Regional Foot and Ankle Associates. Please contact our office today for an appointment!