Ankle Sprains and Treatment

Ankle Sprains & Treatment
Posted on 04/20/2021
Ankle Sprains and Treatment

Chelsey Knutsen, ATC
Highlands Ranch High School

Ankle sprains are common injuries often associated with athletes. However, their prevalence is also high for non-athletes. It is estimated that there are 30,000 ankle sprains per day in the U.S. alone (Drakos, 2018). There are different types of ankle sprains, and each requires a unique form of treatment depending on the extent of pain or tissue damage.

Types of Ankle Sprains
Inversion and eversion are common types of ankle sprains. Inversion ankle sprains lead to lateral ligament injury due to the outward rolling of the ankle and inward turning of the foot. An eversion ankle sprain affects the medial ligament because of the rolling inward of the ankle and the outward movement of the foot (Bux, 2018). Figure 1 below illustrates an inversion and an eversion sprain.

Figure 1 Ankle sprains (Bux, 2018)

Ankle Sprains Figure 1

Grades of Ankle Sprains
Ankle sprains are classified using two basic classifications: anatomic (level of tissue damage) and functional (level of injury and its effect on a patient’s ability to walk). Using both classifications, there are three grades of ankle sprains (Bux, 2018; Drakos, 2018; Harvard Health Publishing, 2019). A grade I sprain has mild or no disability. A grade II sprain has a partial tear. A grade III sprain has a full tear or rupture.

Figure 2 Lateral ankle sprain (Bux, 2018)

Ankle Sprain Figure 2

Treatment of Ankle Sprains

After an injury, the reduction of pain and swelling is the priority. As described by Bux (2018), the P.R.I.C.E (protection, rest, and ice) method is an effective treatment option. The first goal is to protect the ankle from additional injury. The second step is to avoid physical activities that may exacerbate the pain and swelling. Thirdly, the application of ice is important to help suppress swelling. Compression wraps offer a better approach to reducing swelling. In the initial phases, doctors can prescribe medications to reduce pain and swelling (Harvard Health Publishing, 2019). Early motion exercises are fundamental in the recovery process. Patients can subscribe to physical therapy sessions to facilitate recovery (Drakos, 2018). The complexity of the treatment process varies depending on the level of damage. Most ankle sprains heal if protective bracing and physical therapy are used. However, in some cases, surgery is necessary, especially during severe injuries or failure of other recovery methods.

Future of Ankle Instability and Strengthening the Ankle

With the enhancement in technology, the management of ankle injuries is expected to improve. Imaging tools are becoming helpful in identifying the severity of injuries and assessing any secondary damage to tissues. The prioritization of functional treatment (brace, bandage, and tape) over immobilization is fundamental in enhancing recovery. At the same time, using technological tools, personalized care can be provided to improve ankle instability. Physical therapy provides a better approach to strengthening the ankle (Santos-Longhurst, 2019). The use of such exercises as flex and stretch, heel walks, resistance push, and standing calf raises enhance the stability of the ankles.

References:
  1. Bux, S. (2018). Different types of ankle sprains, symptoms & treatment options. Body Heal. https://www.bodyheal.com.au/blogs/sports-injuries/different-types-of-ankle-sprains-symptoms-treatment

  2. Drakos, M. C. (2018). Ankle sprain types and treatments. Hospital for Special Surgery. https://www.hss.edu/conditions_ankle-sprains-types-treatments.asp

  3. Harvard Health Publishing. (2019). Recovering from an ankle sprain. Harvard Health. https://www.health.harvard.edu/pain/recovering_from_an_ankle_sprain

  4. Santos-Longhurst, A. (2019). How to strengthen weak ankles. Healthline. https://www.healthline.com/health/weak-ankles#exercises
Website by SchoolMessenger Presence. © 2022 Intrado Corporation. All rights reserved.

In compliance with Titles VI & VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008, and Colorado law, the Douglas County School District RE-1 does not unlawfully discriminate against otherwise qualified students, employees, applicants for employment, or members of the public on the basis of disability, race, creed, color, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, religion, ancestry, or need for special education services. Discrimination against employees and applicants for employment based on age, genetic information, and conditions related to pregnancy or childbirth is also prohibited in accordance with state and/or federal law. Complaint procedures have been established for students, parents, employees, and members of the public. The School District's Compliance Officer and Title IX Coordinator to address complaints alleging sexual harassment under Title IX is Aaron Henderson, 620 Wilcox Street, Castle Rock, Colorado, [email protected], 720-433-1083.

Outside Agencies

Complaints regarding violations of Title VI, (race, national origin), Title IX (sex, gender), Section 504/ADA (handicap or disability), may be filed directly with the Office for Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Education, 1244 North Speer Blvd., Suite 310, Denver, CO 80204. Complaints regarding violations of Title VII (employment) and the ADEA (prohibiting age discrimination in employment) may be filed directly with the Federal Office of Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 303 E. 17th Ave., Suite 510, Denver, CO 80202, or the Colorado Civil Rights Commission, 1560 Broadway, Suite 1050, Denver, CO 80202.

NOTICE OF DESTRUCTION OF SPECIAL EDUCATION RECORDS

Special Education records which have been collected by Douglas County School District related to the identification, evaluation, educational placement, or the provision of special education in the district, must be maintained under state and federal laws for the period of five (5) years after special education services have ended for the student. Special education services end when the student is no longer eligible for services, graduates, or completes his/her educational program at age 21, or moves from the district. This notification is to inform parents/guardians and former students of Douglas County School District's intent to destroy the special education records of students who exited special education services as of June 30, 2016. These records will be destroyed in accordance with state law unless the parent/guardian or eligible (adult) student notifies the school district otherwise. After five years, the records are no longer useful to the district, but may be useful to the parent/guardian or former student in applying for social security benefits, rehabilitation services, college entrance, etc. The parent/guardian or eligible (adult) student may request a copy of the records by requesting the records by email to [email protected]