Sprained Ankle: An ankle sprain occurs when strong ligaments that support the ankle stretch beyond their limitation and tear. Ankle sprains are prevalent injuries that occur among people of all ages. That,s range from mild to severe, depends on how much damage there is to the ligaments.
- Ligaments are strong, fibrous tissues that connect bones to other bones. Ligaments in the ankle avail to keep the bones inopportune position and stabilize the joint.
- Most sprained ankles occur in the lateral ligaments on the outside of the ankle joint. Sprains range from minimum tears to complete tears through the fibrous tissue(ligament).
- If there is the complete tear of ligaments, the ankle becomes unstable after the initial injury phase passes.
- Over time, this instability can result in damage bones and cartilage of the ankle joint.
- A twisting force in lower leg or foot can cause the strain. The lateral ligaments on the outside of the ankle are injured most frequently.
Causes of Sprained Ankle
Your foot can convolute(twist) unexpectedly during many activities, such as:
- Ambulating(walking) or exercising on an uneven surface
- Falling down
- Participating sports that require cutting actions or rolling and convoluting of the foot—such as trail running, tennis, football, basketball, and soccer
- During sports, someone else may step on your foot while you are running, causing your foot to convolute or roll to the side.
Grades of Ankle Sprains
After the examination, your physicians will determine the grade of your sprain to avail develop a treatment plan. Sprains are graded predicated on how much damage has occurred to the ligaments.
Grade 1 Sprain (Mild)
- Marginal stretching and microscopic tearing of ligament fibers
- Mild tenderness and swelling around ankle joint
Grade 2 Sprain (Moderate)
- Partial tearing of the ligament
- Moderate tenderness and swelling around the ankle joint
- If the physicians move the ankle in certain ways, there is an eccentric(abnormal) looseness of the ankle joint
Grade 3 Sprain (severe)
- A complete tear of the ligament
- Consequential tenderness and swelling around the ankle joint
- If the physicians pull or push on the ankle joint in certain forms of kineticism, substantial instability occurs
Diagnosis Ankle Sprain
Your physicians will diagnose your ankle sprain by performing a conscientious examination of your foot and ankle. This physical exam may painful.
- Palpate- Your physicians will gently press around the ankle to examine which ligaments are injured.
- The range of movement-Your physicians may move your ankle in different directions; however, a stiff, swollen ankle customarily will not move much.
- If there is no broken bone, your physicians may be able to tell the severity of your ankle sprain predicated upon the amount of swelling, pain, and bruising.
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X-rays- provide images of dense structures, such as bone. Your physicians may order x-rays to rule out of the broken bone in ankle or foot. A broken bone can cause homogeneous symptoms of pain and swelling.
Stress x-rays- In integration to plain x-rays, your medico may additionally order stress x-rays. These scans are taken while the ankle is being pushed in different directions. Stress x-rays avail to show whether the ankle is moving anomalously because of injured ligaments.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scan- Your physicians may order MRI if suspects a very astringent(severe) injury to the ligaments, damage to the cartilage or bone of the joint, a diminutive(small) bone chip, or another problem.MRI may not be ordered until after the period of swelling and bruising resolves.
Ultrasound– This imaging scan sanctions your physicians to observe the ligament directly while he or she moves your ankle. This avails your physicians to determine how much stability the ligament provides.
Treatment for Ankle Sprained
Virtually all ankle sprains can be treated without surgery. Even a consummate(complete) ligament tear can heal without surgical repair if it’s immobilized correctly.
A three-phase program treatment for all ankle sprains—from mild to severe:
- Phase 1 includes resting, immobilize the ankle and reducing swelling.
- Phase 2 includes maintaining the range of motion, strength, and flexibility.
- Phase 3 includes maintenance exercises and gradual return to activities that do not require turning or convoluting the ankle. This will be followed later by doing activities that require sharp, sudden turns —such as tennis, basketball, or football.
This three-phase treatment program may take just 2 weeks for minor sprains, or up to 6 to 12 weeks for more astringent(severe) injuries.
Ankle Sprained Home Treatments
For mild sprains, your physicians may recommend simple home treatment.
RICE protocol. Follow the RICE protocol initial after your injury:
Rest- your ankle by not ambulating (walking) on it.
Ice- should be immediately applied to keep the swelling down. It can be utilized for 20 to 30 minutes, three or four times a day. Do not apply ice directly to the skin.
Compression- dressings, bandages will immobilize and support your ankle.
Elevate- your ankle above your heart level as often as possible during the first 48 hours.
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as naproxen and ibuprofen can avail control pain and swelling. Because they improve function by both reducing swelling and controlling pain.