Diagnosis

ANKLE SPRAIN


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 Definition An Ankle Sprain is a stretching or tearing of the ligaments that support the ankle joint
Details The ligaments surrounding the ankle are strong bands of tissue. Most sprains stretch or tear the outside (lateral) ligaments of the ankle. Occasionally, the ligaments in between the bones of the ankle rupture and rarely only the inside (medial) ligament will tear. Ankle Sprains are graded according to the severity of injury to the ligaments.
Grade I: Stretch of the ligaments
Grade II: Partial tear of the ligaments
Grade III: Complete tear of the ligaments
Causes Ankle sprains result when the ankle is forced inward or outward past its normal range of motion. This can occur when a jumping or running athlete lands on an uneven surface. It may also occur when the foot is firmly planted and the body gets twisted. Equipment and surface conditions may also play a role. Sports most commonly associated with ankle sprains include: Basketball, Football, Baseball and Soccer.
Diagnosis The diagnosis of an Ankle Sprain is considered when a patient gives a history of "turning" or "rolling" his or her ankle accompanied by sudden pain and swelling. The physical exam will reveal point tenderness over the injured ligaments with bruising. Ligament testing may reveal abnormally increased motion. X-rays are done to rule out ankle fractures. Occasionally, an MRI is ordered to evaluate the cartilage or tendons around the ankle.

Bruising and swelling of an ankle sprain

Ankle ligament testing
Treatment Nonoperative: Most ankle sprains can be treated nonoperatively with PRICE. P: Protection from further injury via splint, R: Rest, I: Icing, C: Compression Wrap, E: Elevation. A short course of muscle strengthening and balance exercises is essential in order to prevent repeat sprains.

Operative: Occasionally, surgery is needed to re-establish the stability of the ankle. A variety of procedures have been designed to either repair or reconstruct the ligaments.

Brace worn for ankle sprains
Prevention

Taping, Bracing, High Top Shoes
Maintaining excellent ankle muscle strength and balance


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