Ankle Pain is no Walk in the Park

 

Ankle pain can occur in people from all walks of life.

The joint itself is formed by three bones – the tibia, fibula and talus – which are held together by a number of very strong ligaments. Because the ankles support the weight of the entire body, ankle & lower leg injuries are very common and can be debilitating if left untreated. Injury can occur to the bones, ligaments, cartilage, tendons and/or muscles surrounding the ankle joint, causing a range of different symptoms. 

Assessment for ankle ligament sprain.

Assessment for ankle ligament sprain.

Risk factors for ankle injury are well documented. Proven risk factors include:

  • Previous or existing ankle injury especially if poorly rehabilitated (biggest risk factor).

  • Lack of strength and stability related to the ankle.

  • Lack of, or extreme flexibility, in the ankle joint.

  • Poor balance.

  • Sudden change in direction (acceleration or deceleration).

  • Increasing age of player.

Other suspected risk factors include:

  • Poor condition of the playing surface.

  • Inappropriate, inadequate, or no warm-up.

  • Wearing inappropriate footwear for the activity.

  • Lack of external ankle support (taping, bracing) for previously injured ankles.

The immediate treatment of any soft tissue injury consists of the RICER protocol – rest, ice, compression, elevation and referral. RICE protocol should be followed for 48–72 hours.  The aim is to reduce the bleeding and damage within the joint. The ankle should be rested in an elevated position with an ice pack applied for 20 minutes every two hours (never apply ice directly to the skin). A correctly sized compression bandage should be applied to limit bleeding and swelling in the joint.

The No HARM protocol should also be applied – no heat, no alcohol, no running or activity, and no massage. This will ensure decreased bleeding and swelling in the injured area.

A sports medicine professional should be seen as soon as possible after the injury to determine the extent of injury and to advise on treatment and rehabilitation. That’s where we come in.

Testing for ankle stability following a ligament sprain.

Testing for ankle stability following a ligament sprain.

At Keilor Road Physiotherapy, we have the expert skills to treat and assess all ankle & lower leg injuries: 

  • Ankle sprains including syndesmosis injury 

  • Avulsion fractures & CAM walker / Moonboot placement 

  • Achilles Tendinopathy / Tendinitis / Tendinosis 

  • Calf muscle tears & strains 

  • Stress Fractures 

  • Shin Splints 

  • Osteoarthritis & Rheumatoid Arthritis 

  • Running & Gait Assessment 

  • Foot & Ankle Biomechanics Assessment & Customised Formthotic placement 

Post Surgical Rehabilitation: 

  • Tibia &/or Fibula fracture 

  • Achilles Tendon Rupture and Repair 

  • Ankle arthroscopic debridement, resurfacing or replacement 

Our physiotherapists have Post Graduate training in the diagnosis and management of all ankle conditions. Regardless of what lower leg injury you may be dealing with, every person presenting to Keilor Road Physiotherapy is assessed & rehabilitated through an individually tailored approach to help maximise their recovery. We are also able to refer for further investigation, whether it’s X-Ray, CT or MRI should one of our experienced team feel there may be a fracture or other structural injury. 

Because we are experts in functional rehabilitation of lower leg injuries, with all presentations assessed to best evidence based practice, you can expect a return to what you do best in a minimal amount of time, regardless of whether it’s a return to sport, tackling that long distance run or just enjoying a stroll. 

Servicing Niddrie, Essendon, Airport West, Keilor & the Northern suburbs for over 40 years, you can book with one of our highly trained ankle & lower leg team online here or call 93794557 to speak to one of our admin superstars.