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Are You Suffering From An Ankle Sprain? You’re Not Alone…

August 03, 2017 in Articles, News
Posted by Jessica Aldo
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A lateral ankle sprain, known as Anterior Talofibular Ligament {ATFL} Sprain, is one of the most common injuries in sports, but can easily happen from a misstep in daily life. An ATFL sprain occurs when the ankle inverts {toes point inward} and the toes point down, rolling, twisting, or turning the ankle in an awkward position. These injuries can be seen in sports from running, cutting, landing from a jump, or from a direct blow. Occasionally a tear and pop can be heard, accompanied with pain and swelling immediately. Bruising may be seen a day or two later and patients may or may not be able to bear weight on the injured ankle.

HOW IS THE SEVERITY OF THE ANKLE SPRAIN DIAGNOSED?
  • Grade I: The ligament is stretched but there is no tear which would result in instability of the ankle joint 
    • Recovery time can take between 2 to 4 weeks
  • Grade II: Moderate pain, swelling, potential discoloration, and difficulty walking with mild ligamentous instability 
    • Immobilization may be recommended such as an ankle brace or air cast with crutches
    • Recovery time can take between 4 to 8 weeks  
  • Grade III: Most severe – complete rupture of the lateral ligament
    • Immobilization is used with walking boot or even a cast with crutches because of the instability
    • Recovery time can take up to 3 months or more
HOW DO I TREAT MY ANKLE SPRAIN?

Treatment typically begins with rest, ice, compression, and elevation, using the ankle as little as possible to avoid overstressing the healing ligaments. Physical Therapy can assist with treatment recovery by determining activity restrictions during the healing process and eventually adding functional strengthening exercises to a patient’s rehabilitation. Virginia Therapy and Fitness Center customizes each program to the needs of the patient to ensure they get back to the game {or life} faster, while reducing the risk of future injuries. 

Click here to schedule or call 703.709.1116 to schedule with one of our Physical Therapists today! 

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