If you twist your ankle or step down in an awkward way, you might experience a fracture. Though painful, with early intervention, it’s possible to treat fractures and prevent them from getting worse. At North Florida Foot & Ankle Specialists, Joshua Epstein, DPM, AACFAS, FACPM, and Sarina Epstein, DPM, AACFAS, offer all-inclusive treatment for ankle fractures. To make an appointment at the office in Gainesville or Lake City, Florida, call the nearest office.
What are ankle fractures?
An ankle fracture is an injury to your ankle bone. Fractures vary in severity. Some are small and almost impossible to see; others are significant and require surgical repair with pins, rods, or plates.
If you suffer an ankle fracture, it’s important to seek treatment right away. The sooner you receive care at North Florida Foot & Ankle Specialists, the less likely you are to experience complications.
What are the symptoms of ankle fractures?
Symptoms of ankle fractures include:
- Intense, throbbing pain
- Visible deformity
If you experience an ankle fracture, you might also find it difficult to stand up or put weight on your affected ankle.
What causes ankle fractures?
Ankle fractures occur for various reasons, including sports injuries, work injuries, car accidents, and falls. You might also experience an ankle fracture due to a misstep, like putting your foot down awkwardly or stepping into a hole.
Who is at risk of suffering an ankle fracture?
Anyone can suffer an ankle fracture, but there are several factors that can increase your risk, including:
- Playing high-impact sports, like football, basketball, or gymnastics
- Using improper technique
- Failing to wear the necessary safety equipment
- A sudden increase in your activity levels
- A cluttered home
Certain medical conditions can also increase your risk of an ankle fracture. For example, you’re more likely to lose your balance and fall if you have osteoporosis.
How are broken ankles diagnosed?
To diagnose a broken ankle, your North Florida Foot & Ankle Specialists provider asks about your symptoms, including their severity and when they first started.
Next, they examine your ankle, looking for points of swelling, redness, or tenderness. They also test your ankle’s range of motion and have you walk a short distance to examine your gait. If visual observation isn’t enough to determine the cause of your pain, your provider orders X-rays or an MRI.
How is a broken ankle treated?
At North Florida Foot & Ankle Specialists, treatment of a broken ankle depends on the location and severity of the fracture. Often, conservative treatments are enough to encourage your body’s healing process. For example, you might benefit from:
- Over-the-counter pain medication
- Physical therapy
- Immobilization (with a boot or a cast)
- Mobility devices like crutches or a walker
- Reduction (a process that helps your bones heal properly)
If your ankle fracture is severe, you might benefit from surgical intervention. Special tools, like pins, rods, and screws, can hold your bones in the proper position, allowing them to heal.
To receive treatment for a broken ankle, make an appointment at North Florida Foot & Ankle Specialists by calling the nearest office today.