​Foot & Ankle Injuries

Chronic lateral ankle pain is recurring pain on the outside part of the ankle that often develops after an injury such as a sprained ankle.

Signs and symptoms include:

 

  • Ankle instability

  • Difficulty walking on uneven ground or in high heels

  • Pain, sometimes intense, on the outer side of the ankle

  • Repeated ankle sprains

  • Stiffness

  • Swelling

  • Tenderness  

Although ankle sprains are the most common cause of chronic lateral ankle pain, other causes may include:

 

  • A fracture in one of the bones that make up the ankle joint

  • Arthritis of the ankle joint.

  • Inflammation of the joint lining

  • Injury to the nerves that pass through the ankle. In this case, the nerves become stretched, torn, injured by a direct blow, or pinched under pressure

  • Scar tissue in the ankle after a sprain. The scar tissue takes up space in the joint, putting pressure on the ligaments

  • Torn or inflamed tendon

Treatments for chronic lateral ankle pain include:

 

  • Over the counter or prescription anti-inflammatory medications to reduce swelling

  • Physical therapy, including tilt-board exercises that focus on strengthening the muscles, restoring range of motion, and increasing your perception of joint position

  • Ankle braces or other supports

  • Steroid medication

  • Immobilization to allow the bone to heal (in cases of fractures)

The ankle is a synovial hinge joint that is relatively resistant to the development of degenerative joint disease and osteoarthritis compared to other major weight bearing synovial joints such as the knee and hip.  Cell signaling proteins such as FAC, IL-6 and MCP-1 are increased with increasing degree of pathology.

Injury-Related Arthritis

 

Wear and tear on the ankle joint can lead to problems much later in life, especially when damage to the articular cartilage occurs. 

 

Necrosis

 

When the blood supply to the bones of the ankle joint lose circulation, the joint and bones begin to deteriorate, eventually causing trauma or fracture.

 

Osteoarthritis

 

Over time, the cartilage that normally allows the ankle joint to move smoothly deteriorates. This can lead to pain and loss of normal ankle movement.

 



Palm Beach Sports Injury Institute, 210 Jupiter Lakes Blvd., Suite 3102, Jupiter, FL  33458      (561) 747-9334