The most common type of ankle injury is lateral sprain. Lateral means on the outside of your foot. This usually occurs due to excessive rolling on the out edge of you foot, so the foot turns inwards resulting in the outside ligaments (fibrous tissue that attaches bone to bone) to stretch, tear and possible rupture.
When a lateral ankle sprain occurs it is usually accompanied by pain and swelling. Some people may find it difficult to weight bear on the foot at this time and crutches might be required.
The common lateral ankle ligaments that stabilize the leg bone (fibular) to the foot are most often injured. 3 ligaments, anterior talo-fibular ligament (ATFL), calcaneofibular ligament and posterior talo-fibular ligament (PTFL) make up the complex of ligaments on the outside of your foot that stabilize.
Usually the ATFL if effect first followed by the calcaneofibular, if the sprain is significant in nature. Rarely the PTFL is damage as it is a very tough ligament. Sprain to the medial (inside) ankle are uncommon but can occur if the foot is rolled out.
Like all acute injuries, rest, ice, compression and elevation should be administered for the first 72 hours and heat, alcohol, running and massage should be avoided.
It is imperative to start ankle physiotherapy soon after an ankle sprain, the next day, if possible, to decrease pain, swelling and bleeding around the injury and maintain your movement and return you to sport and daily activities as soon as possible.
If you have followed all of the above advice, please seek advice from you Sydney Physiotherapist immediately to commence your rehabilitative program.
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