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25 W. Lincoln Ave.

Charleston, IL 61920


Ankle Pain

How Common Are Ankle Injuries?

Among the body's major joints, the ankle is the most frequently injured. In hospital emergency rooms, ankle ligament sprains are the most commonly seen injury to muscles or bones. Participation in sports/aerobics can sometimes lead to ankle sprain (for example, up to 40% of all basketball injuries involve the ankle).

What Causes Ankle Injuries?

An acute ankle injury generally results from a sudden turning outward of the foot while supporting the body's weight, or an external force hitting the body from the side. The quick, extreme pressure placed upon the ligaments around the ankle can cause them to tear. A chronic ankle injury often develops over a long period of time, and can occur if the foot's posture is unstable. This weakens the ligaments surrounding the ankle joint, making them more likely to tear.

What Can My Healthcare Professional Do To Help Me Feel Better?

Much will depend on the severity of the injury, how quickly the injury is attended to, and the results of the examination. The treatment you do receive will generally focus on relieving pain and swelling (if any), restoring full range of motion (ROM), and strengthening the joint to help prevent a recurrence of the injury. The success of your healthcare professional's treatment plan will largely depend on how closely you follow his/her instructions, and how actively involved you become in your recovery program.

As My Ankle Heals, What Can I Do To Prevent Reinjury?

In most cases, patient involvement should begin during the healing process. Your doctor may prescribe spinal/pelvic stabilizers (also called "foot orthotics") to help normalize foot and ankle motion, stabilize the joint, and protect your feet from what is known as heel-strike shock: That shock is the force wave which travels through your body every time your foot hits the ground. If not properly absorbed, heel-strike shock can adversely affect the treatments you receive, or can considerably slow your recovery. Because it is very important to wear your stabilizers all day long, and because most people wear at least two styles of shoes each day, your healthcare professional may decide that a stabilizer Combo (two pairs) would be best for you. Check with your healthcare professional for more specific details about stabilizers.

What Kind of Exercise Should I Be Doing?

Your healthcare professional can best determine what rehabilitative exercise would be suitable for your condition. Exercise is encouraged for ankle sprains to promote healing and strengthening of affected structures. An exercise program can also lessen the risk and severity of reinjury. Therapeutic exercise is often introduced very early in the healing process. One method your healthcare professional may prescribe is the Thera-Ciser™ Therapeutic Exercise System. Thera-Ciser is easy to use in the privacy of your home, sets up in seconds, and helps you regain ankle strength and movement without pain. Ask Dr. Schuster if orthotics or the Thera-Ciser exercise system would help your ankle injury.

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