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Ankle Sprains & Fractures

Ankle sprains and fractures are painful injuries that can make it difficult or impossible to walk and engage in daily activities. The foot and ankle specialists at Beacon Orthopaedics in Cincinnati can effectively treat ankle sprains and fractures to get our patients back on their feet.

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Symptoms of a Sprained Ankle

The most noticeable symptom of a sprained ankle is pain. Additional symptoms may include:

  • Swelling
  • Bruising
  • Tenderness
  • Instability

Treatment for Ankle Sprains

Non-Surgical Treatment for Ankle Sprains

At Beacon Orthopaedics, we always recommend the least invasive treatment possible that will alleviate a patient’s symptoms and allow their ankle to heal. For a mild to moderate ankle sprain, treatment can often be done at home:

  • Rest the ankle
  • Ice the ankle
  • Compress the ankle with bandages or dressings
  • Elevate the injured ankle
  • Treat pain and inflammation with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)

In some cases, patients will require crutches to help them walk, and the ankle should be immobilized with a brace or cast. Physical therapy is often essential to the healing process for a sprained ankle.

Surgery for Ankle Sprains

Surgery for ankle sprains is rare, and is only performed when an injury does not respond to less invasive treatment or when an ankle remains unstable after nonsurgical treatment. Surgery that may be performed for an ankle sprain includes:

Arthroscopy: Using a tiny camera to look at the ankle joint. This may help identify and remove bone fragments or loose cartilage, or identify parts of the ligament that have not healed properly.

Ankle Reconstruction: In some cases, internal stitches or sutures may be used to repair a torn ankle ligament. Rarely, a damaged ligament is reconstructed with a graft from another ligament.2

Treatment for Ankle Fractures

Non-Surgical Treatment

Non-invasive treatment is always a priority at Beacon Orthopaedics, whenever possible. In some cases, a minor ankle fracture can be treated by immobilizing the joint with a brace or cast.

Surgery for Ankle Fractures

A serious broken ankle often requires surgery. Depending on the location and type of fracture, a broken ankle may be surgically treated by:

  • Removing bone fragments
  • Repositioning and realigning bones
  • Using screws or plates to stabilize the bone and joint4

Frequently Asked Questions About Ankle Sprains and Fractures

Can a sprained ankle turn into a fracture?

No. A sprain is an injury to a ligament, while a fracture is an injury to a bone.

How long do ankle sprains take to heal?

The length of time it takes for a sprained ankle to heal depends on the location and severity of the sprain. A minor sprain may heal in as little as two weeks, while it may take up to 12 weeks for a severe ankle sprain to heal.

Contact Beacon Orthpaedics

If you are experiencing ankle pain, swelling, and other symptoms, you should have your ankle evaluated by an experienced orthopedic doctor. The foot and ankle specialists at Beacon Orthopaedics in Cincinnati can examine your injury and recommend the most effective treatment to alleviate your pain and help you heal. Contact us to schedule a consultation.

1 Cleveland Clinic. Sprained ankle. Available: https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/22048-sprained-ankle. Accessed March 25, 2022.
2 American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. Sprained Ankle. Available: https://orthoinfo.aaos.org/en/diseases–conditions/sprained-ankle/. Accessed March 25, 2022.
3 Mayo Clinic. Broken ankle. Available: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/broken-ankle/symptoms-causes/syc-20450025. Accessed March 25, 2022.
4 American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. Ankle fractures. Available: https://orthoinfo.aaos.org/en/diseases–conditions/ankle-fractures-broken-ankle/. Accessed March 25, 2022.