Orthopedic Minute - Ankle Sprains


Hi, I'm Doctor Sandy Klein with Washington University Orthopedics. Many patients with ankle sprains come to see me at our outpatient surgery center in Chesterfield and Barnes-Jewish Hospital when their ankle pain fails to improve after several weeks.

Ankle sprains can range from very mild to severe and most patients want to know when should they seek medical treatment. Any ankle sprain is an injury to the ligaments that surround the ankle and provide it with stability. Most ankle sprains will respond very well to rest and limiting sports activities, ice, compression and elevation. An ankle sprain that is associated with more severe swelling and bruising may require medical treatment.

My advice is that if you have an ankle sprain that is significantly swollen, bruised or you're unable to put your weight on your foot, you may need x-rays to rule out any additional injuries such as a broken bone or injuries to the cartilage inside the ankle. Medical treatment when sought sooner rather than later can help get you back to the activities that you enjoy.

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