A sprain is an injury to the ligament that can either be stretched or torn. Ankle sprains are quite common and can happen during a sports activity or by simply stepping on an uneven surface. Inversion sprains (rolling the foot/ankle in) are quite common and involve an injury to the lateral ligaments, which are found on the outside of the ankle and foot. In severe cases, the ligaments that attach to the bone can completely rupture. Sometimes, if the ligament is overstretched, the joint can become very unstable, which can lead to constant sprains. If the
sprain is mild, there can be some swelling, skin discoloration and pain when standing or walking.
Anyone can suffer from ankle sprains, however, people with high arched feet and/or inflexibility in the calf muscle are more susceptible to ankle sprains, as well as people who wear improper footwear, have poor proprioceptive response, irritation or repetitive micro trauma to the tissue. Symptoms usually resolve much quicker if the treatment is offered as soon as possible, preventing further damage to the tissue.
What are the signs and symptoms?
• Pain and tenderness
• Swelling and Bruising
• Inability to walk
• Stiffness in the foot and ankle
• Coolness in the ankle/foot
• Numbness in the ankle/foot
Before any treatment is recommended, proper
assessment is required. Sometimes, in addition to the sprain, there could be a bone fracture or damage to the tendon. There are various treatments that depend on the severity of the
injury. Treatment may include simply resting the ankle,
anti-inflammatory medications, tapping, tens machine, extracorporal shock wave therapy, hydrotherapy, ankle bracing and/or laser treatments. For injuries caused by overstretching the ligaments leading to frequent
sprains we can use prolotherapy to make the ligament thicker and stronger. To prevent an ankle sprain, make sure you warm up your muscles before you exercise or play sports. Also, be careful when walking, running or working on an uneven surface.