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Ankle sprains and instability

What are ankle sprains and instability?

Strong ligaments keep the bones of the ankle joint together, and these, combined with the muscles attached to the foot’s bones, are key in maintaining joint stability.

An ankle sprain, a common soft-tissue injury, occurs when the ankle’s ligaments are twisted sharply or over-stretched, leading to a partial or complete tear.

Many sprains impact the lateral ankle ligament. An ankle sprain can mean long-term ankle instability if it is not treated effectively.

What causes an ankle sprain?

The normal cause of a lateral ankle sprain is an ‘inversion injury’ in which the foot’s sole is abruptly forced inwards. Untreated, a serious sprain resulting in a complete tear may lead to long-term instability and weakness, leaving the ankle liable to collapse and for injury to recur. With serious sprains, tiny pieces of bone may also shear away at the point where the ligament attaches. Exercising on bumpy surfaces, falling, or twisting the foot while participating in sport are other causes of sprains.

Ankle sprain

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