Inversion injuries are four times more common than eversion injuries, as the lateral ligaments are weaker than the medial ligaments of the ankle.
The lateral ankle consists of three ligamenets – the anterior talofibular ligament (ATFL), the posterior talofibular ligament (PTFL) and the calcaneofibular ligament (CFL).
The ATFL is the most frequently injured ligament.
Being able to weight-bear immediately after injury, followed by an increase in pain and swelling as you continue to walk or play sport suggests a ligament sprain.
Sprains - graded
ligament sprain is graded to determine the degree of damage:
What you do immediately after injuring your ankle and within the first 24-48 hours post-injury is key to rehabilitation.
Main points of rehab:
Ditch the RICE concept, POLICE is now the new way to help you back to full recovery (Protection, Optimal Loading, Ice, Compression and Elevation)
Protection - avoid any further damage with use of braces, crutches or supports but this does not necessarily mean completely immobilised and for a long period of time.
Optimal Loading – pain-free, non-weight-bearing movements and gradually progress into weight-bearing movements. Keeping tissues moving allows proteins and hormones to be released which actually promote faster healing.
Ice - apply to injured area for 10-15 minutes to help reduce pain and swelling. Never apply ice directly to the skin.
Compression - use of a bandage helps control the swelling.
Elevation - very effective in reducing swelling and pain. You can combine it with gentle exercises that aid circulation such as moving the ankle up and down or tightening the thigh muscles to straighten the knee.
Restore full range of movement
Return to sport
Treatment for Grade III injuries
Functional recovery is quicker than surgery as surgical repairs often present with stiffness in the joint.
Early mobilisation provides a better outcome than surgery.
Suffering with any of these signs and symptoms?
Want any help with your road to recovery?
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