Injured Ankle? Top 5 Common Problems
With more people adopting healthier and active lifestyles, some of the most common complaints we hear from patients are ankle injuries and pain.
The ankle is the body’s most commonly injured joint for both children and adults. Here are some of the most common ankle-related problems we see:
- Ankle fractures: A simple roll of your ankle can cause an ankle fracture, which is a partial or full break of a bone in your ankle. Pain, swelling, bruising, inability to walk and change of appearance all indicate that you may have sustained an ankle fracture.
- Ankle sprains: Overstretched or torn ligaments in the ankle happen when twisting the ankle. Ankle sprains range from mild to severe but are most often accompanied by swelling, bruising, decreased range of motion, and tenderness. It may be difficult to put weight on the injured ankle and can prevent you from performing activities of daily living.
- Impingements: Ankle impingement syndrome happens when tendons and/or nerves around the ankle are compressed. Special populations are more at risk for this condition, including runners, dancers, volleyball players and individuals that jump high for their sport. Additional symptoms include swelling, joint stiffness, and numbness or tingling.
- Tendinitis: Inflamed and irritated ankle tendons can be the result of overuse by repetitive movement. Age, increase in training intensity and occupational overuse can all increase the risk of developing tendinitis. Symptoms include swelling, discomfort and a popping sensation in the ankle. Advanced symptoms may also include having a constant ache that gets worse with walking, running or jumping.
- Osteoarthritis: This condition is generally categorized by normal wear and tear on the ankle joint that results in the gradual wearing away of cartilage. This disintegration can create a grinding sensation during ankle movement, stiffness in the joint, ankle instability and pain deep in the joint. Over time, bone spurs can also develop as a result of osteoarthritis, as well as deformity of the joint itself. Further deterioration can eventually make bearing weight and walking.
If you suspect that you have injured your ankle, it’s important to stabilize the joint and reduce swelling. The RICE technique is useful in many instances, which stands for rest, ice, compression and elevation. Once you have stabilized the joint, and depending on the severity of pain, you can then call your podiatrist to have an exam performed.
As you can see, many symptoms of different injuries and conditions are similar, so it’s important to see a professional for proper diagnosis and treatment. Request an appointment with one of our podiatric specialists today for a foot exam by clicking here or call any of our convenient office locations in the Piedmont Triad.
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