What is Sprained Ankle?
As common as dirt, there are generally about 25,000 people regardless of age, gender, occupations, or doing any physical activities will experience sprained ankle everyday. As simple as walking on an uneven surface or stepping down at an angle, you can even sprain your ankle.
The ankle’s ligament holds the ankle bones and joint in place, preventing the ankle joint from unusual movement, such as twisting, turning, and rolling of the foot.
A ligament is a flexible structure, where it stretches and returns back to original position. In any circumstances where the ligament is strained exceeding the limit, a sprain occurred. A very bad sprain will tear the elastic fibers.
Mechanism of Injury
To determine the level stain of a ankle sprain, we grade them according to grade 1 to 3; Grade 1- mild sprain, Grade 2- moderate sprain, Grade 3- severely sprain. (Refer to the table below).
|Severity||Physical Examination Findings||Impairment||Pathophysiology||Typical Treatment|
|Grade 1||Minimal tenderness and swelling||Minimal||Microscopic tearing of collagen fibers||Weight bearing as tolerated
No splinting/casting Isometric exercises
Full range-of-motion and stretching/ strengthening exercises as tolerated
|Grade 2||Moderated tenderness and swelling Decreased range of motion Possible instability||Moderated||Complete tears of some but not all collagen fibers in the ligament||Immobilization with air splint Physical therapy with range-of-motion and stretching/ strengthening exercises|
|Grade 3||Significant swelling and tenderness Instability||Severe||Complete tear/ rupture of ligament||Immobilization Physical therapy similar to that for grade 2 sprains but over a longer period Possible surgical reconstruction|
What are the symptoms of a sprained ankle?
The level of pain that you will feel is according to how bad the stretching and tearing of the ligament. Cases where your ankle become unstable, means that the ligament is completely tore or a dislocation of the ankle joint.