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Ankle Sprain

When you twist your ankle and it starts to swell, you may have a sprained ankle that causes considerable pain and affects your mobility. There are many ways you can hurt your ankle, so seek a board-certified sprained ankle doctor to determine if it’s indeed sprained. The treatment you get all depends on an accurate diagnosis, and Dr. Velimir Petkov of podiatry clinic Clifton, New Jersey has the most advanced diagnostic equipment, as well as years of experience resolving ankle pain. If your ankle hurts, call Premier Podiatry for an appointment right away.

A sprained ankle is a common injury that often requires basic home care like icing the area. When the pain in your ankle is manageable, ice may be the first line of defense recommended by a podiatrist Clifton like Dr. Velimir Petkov at Premier Podiatry in Passaic County, New Jersey. Get an accurate diagnosis because it’s possible that your sprained ankle may involve a hairline foot or ankle fracture that requires more than simply icing the joint.

You can injure your ankle in many ways, including by bending, turning or awkwardly twisting while you’re moving. An ankle sprain causes the elastic ligaments to stretch or worse: tear. These ligaments help your ankle joint function freely, allowing you to move your ankle in many different directions. A high ankle sprain affects the ligaments connecting the tibia to your fibula in your lower leg. Ligament damage usually shows up as:

  • Swelling, bruising and tenderness around your ankle
  • A popping sound or feeling when you’ve sprained the ankle
  • Instability in the ankle
  • Excruciating pain when you try to stand on the affected leg
  • A limited ability to move

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Ways You Can Sprain Your Ankle

Foot injuries happen in children and young adults mostly due to sport activities that require jumping, rolling, twisting, running or changing directions suddenly. If you don’t seek treatment immediately, the foot pain can become more acute or even chronic. Sometimes, past injuries you think you’ve recovered from can turn into rheumatoid arthritis later in life.

Osteoporosis is common among the elderly, and the weakened bones can turn any awkward ankle movement into a sprained ankle. If you suspect osteoporosis or if you’re advancing in years, take care while walking on uneven ground. Even for younger adults, watch your step if you aren’t used to physical activities like walking long distances or running up and down stairs. Your sprained ankle doctor at Premier Podiatry in Clifton, NJ may check your gait during an evaluation, as imbalance can lead to an ankle sprain.

Another reason for spraining your ankle is wearing improper shoes. People with flat feet are susceptible to spraining an ankle from the wrong shoes. And high heel wearers can sprain an ankle easily, in addition to sustaining other foot-related conditions, such as:

Diagnosing Your Ankle Pain

When your ankle hurts, you may wonder if you’ve sprained it and if so, what to do for a sprained ankle. A general physician may recommend using the R.I.C.E. treatment: rest, ice, compression and elevation. You also can take over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs) for the pain and swelling. This is a good starting point, but if the pain continues or becomes unbearable, don’t wait any longer to find an experienced podiatrist New Jersey like Dr. Petkov.

When you visit Premier Podiatry in Clifton, NJ, your sprained ankle doctor completes a physical examination. Slight pressure on the ankle helps locate the exact area of pain. Ligament damage becomes apparent when you try to move your ankle in different directions. To confirm the diagnosis, you may need to undergo one or more tests that can identify exactly where the ankle damage is located. These tests include:

  • Digital x-rays
  • A diagnostic ultrasound
  • CT scans
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)

How to Treat a Sprained Ankle

The goals of your podiatrist are to reduce your pain and promote healing that shrinks the inflammation. After confirming the diagnosis, your doctor discusses your treatment options with you. For mild sprains, he may provide you with at-home instructions to rest your ankle so it can heal. For more severe sprains, he has other treatments he can employ, such as:

Ankle Sprain Q & A

What are the symptoms of a sprained ankle?

A sprained ankle occurs when a supportive ligament is overstretched or torn. This common injury can occur when you roll your ankle while missing a step on a flight of stairs, while playing sports, or while running on an uneven surface, to name a few causes. Sprained ankles often mimic signs and symptoms of fractures, so to ensure you get a thorough diagnosis early on, you need to see your podiatrist if you experience:

  • Bruising or swelling
  • Pain or inflammation
  • Difficulty bearing weight on the ankle

Without proper treatment, a sprained ankle can lead to permanent instability, which can leave you more prone to going through the same injury time and time again. Early intervention and medical treatment are important to ensure you have a full recovery.

How is a sprained ankle treated?

Dr. Petkov offers several solutions to treat your sprained ankle, minimize pain, and strengthen soft tissues. Depending on the severity of your sprain and how much swelling or inflammation you have, your treatment plan can include:

  • Supportive prescription orthotics
  • Soft Casting, bracing, or splinting
  • Corticosteroid injections
  • Physical therapy
  • Anti-inflammatory medications

It takes time, lots of rest, and plenty of periods of elevation to fully recover from an ankle sprain. But rest assured, Dr. Petkov and the team at Premier Podiatry work diligently to treat your injury.

Do I need surgery for an ankle sprain?

Usually not. Most ankle pain sufferers get the relief they need and have a full recovery by going through the aforementioned conservative treatments. Occasionally, though, an ankle ligament tear might be so severe that it might need to be repaired surgically. Depending on your specific injury, ankle sprain surgery may involve suturing a torn ligament back together, or reconstructing a damaged ligament with tissue from another area of your body. If you do need ankle sprain surgery, Dr. Petkov and his team care for you every step of the way both before and after your procedure.

Dr. Petkov often gives you advice for avoiding future accidents. For example, he recommends the use of orthotics if you have chronic foot or ankle problems like painful arches. Follow his suggestions to stay healthy and mobile. But when you don’t know how to fix a sprained ankle, contact Premier Podiatry for the best care and the fastest treatment to get you back on your feet again.

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