Common Foot Problems

Ankle Fractures

An ankle fracture is a partial or complete break of the tibia, fibula or both. Ankle fractures can vary from minor avulsion injuries -- small pieces of bone that have been pulled off -- to severely shattered bones.

Fractures in the ankle are common injuries, often caused by an inward or outward rolling of the ankle. An ankle fracture is sometimes mistaken for an ankle sprain. Although these injuries can occur together, they are very different and require early and accurate diagnosis.

Patients may experience one or all of these symptoms from an ankle fracture:

  • Pain at the fracture site that can sometimes radiate from the foot to the knee.
  • Significant swelling that may extend over the entire leg or stay localized.

Blisters might develop over the fracture site. Blisters should be treated immediately by Dr. Radovic.

Bruising around the joint that develops shortly after injury.Inability to walk. But walking ability should never be relied on as a test for fractures because patients with less severe breaks may still be able to walk.

In cases of severe fractures, obvious deformities of bones around the ankle.Bone may be exposed. Bone protruding through the skin require immediate evaluation to prevent severe infectionAnkle Fractures and prolonged recovery.

An ankle injury should be evaluated by Dr. Radovic for proper diagnosis and treatment. If Dr. Radovic is not immediately available, the patient should go to the emergency room for initial evaluation, then follow up with Dr. Radovic for a more complete examination.

Dr. Radovic will touch specific areas of the affected ankle to evaluate the injury. X-rays or other imaging studies may be ordered if necessary to confirm diagnosis.

The treatment plan varies depending on the type and severity of the ankle fracture. Dr. Radovic will initially recommend the R.I.C.E. method as follows:

Rest: Do not walk on the injured anklAnkle Fracturese to prevent further injury.

Ice: Apply an ice bag wrapped in a thin towel to the injured ankle. Ice for 20 minutes then allow the area to warm for at least 40 minutes before icing again.

Compression: Wrap the ankle with an elastic bandage to control swelling.
Elevation: Keep the leg elevated slightly above heart level to reduce swelling.

Other treatment options include:
Immobilization: Protecting and restricting the foot and ankle with a cast or splint allows certain fractures to heal.
Prescription medications: Dr. Radovic may prescribe pain medications or anti-inflammatory drugs for pain relief.

Surgery is necessary to repair some ankle fractures and other soft tissue related injuries. Dr. Radovic will choose the procedure most suitable to the particular injury.

Following Dr. Radovic's post operative care instructions is very important in preventing infection, deformity, arthritis and chronic pain.

To learn about Ankle Fracture Surgery

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