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FAQs

Will OAT work for a severe ankle injury for a post-menopausal woman?

After a very severe ankle injury, I found out I have a hole in the ankle bone that goes clear down to through the cartilage to the bone. The surgeon is recommending something called an OAT procedure. At age 55 (and being a post-menopausal woman), will this work for me? I don't heal as well as I used to. Holes referred to as "defects" in cartilage that go clear down to the bone can be treated with the technique you mentioned: osteochondral autograft transfer or OAT. Osteochondral autograft transf...

Is it normal after ankle surgery 5 years ago that I can't stand on my left leg without falling over?

I just noticed yesterday when I was playing Simon Says with my five-year-old that I can no longer stand on my left leg without falling over. I did have surgery on that side two years ago for a badly sprained ankle. But I went through physiotherapy and everything seemed fine back then. Is this normal? Should I be worried? What you are describing might be something referred to as functional instability. More formal testing would be needed to know for sure -- and to advise you what to do. Functiona...

Tell me about end-stage arthritis in my left ankle.

I have what's called end-stage arthritis in my left ankle. It really affects my walking. Even getting around the house can be a real chore some days. I try not to let this get me down but I have to admit it does put a damper on my life. Do other people feel this way too? Or am I just having a pity party for myself? Severe ankle arthritis is less common than hip or knee arthritis but just as disabling. So say researchers at the VA Medical Center in Seattle Washington. Researchers from the Mechani...

Does arthritis in an ankle get worse or time or should I have surgery?

I have arthritis in one ankle from a bad break I got when I was a wild and wooley 20-something. Now I'm paying for it in my 40s. Is there any way to tell if I'm getting worse over time and when I should have surgery? I want to put it off for as long as possible. Severe ankle arthritis is less common than hip or knee arthritis but just as disabling. It is possible to take baseline measurements and to measure the impact of ankle arthritis on function. Limitations in function during daily activitie...

Will my insurance company pay for special injections for ankle arthritis?

I had some special injections to my knee for arthritis that helped smooth things out and improve pain and motion. It was expensive but my insurance company paid for it (well they paid the usual 80 per cent). I asked about having the same treatment for my ankle arthritis and they flat refused to pay. What's up with that? Can I fight it? It sounds like maybe you had a series of injections using hyaluronic acid. Hyaluronic acid is a substance naturally found in the body in small quantities. It seem...

What do patients say about ankle joint replacement?

I have the most painful ankle in the world. In fact, I'm literally ready to have the surgeon just cut the foot off. I can't walk much less run. Can't ride my horse anymore. Can't keep up with my grandkids. I asked about a joint replacement but the surgeon put me off. Said it was too 'experimental.' I know people are getting them. What do other patients say about their results? If it's good, I'm going to find someone to do the surgery anyway. Surgeons agree that a total ankle replacement is a com...

Am I a good candidate for ankle replacement surgery?

I'm trying to find some information on ankle replacement surgery. I've seen two surgeons who both think I'm a pretty good candidate for this type of surgery. I've talked with two other patients who seem very happy with their results. What's the general word on the street about doing this? I know it's a fairly new-ish procedure and that it hasn't been perfected yet. What do you think I should know? There is one recent study from Duke Medical Center that may have the answers you are looking for. I...

Is there anything else that can be down for the outside edge of my ankle sprain?

O geez. I sprained the outside edge of my left ankle two months ago and it never healed right. Clicking, popping, pain, etc. Finally saw an orthopedist. Said I need surgery because the tendon is popping in and out of the groove. Yikes. Is there anything else that can be done? You may have an unusual lateral ankle sprain with a condition called peroneal tendon instability. A lateral ankle sprain means the side of the ankle away from the other leg is sprained. The two peroneal tendons go down the ...

What's unusual about the tendons not staying in the groove as a result of an ankle sprain?

I sprained my ankle doing a stupid move on my motorcycle. It never seemed to heal so I finally went in for help. They discovered the tendons along the outside of my leg aren't staying in the groove where they are supposed to be. The doc said it was unusual but I didn't catch what was unusual and why mine aren't staying where they are supposed to. Can you help explain this to me? Ankle sprain is a common injury in athletes as well as the active adult. Most of the time, the ankle heals with a lit...

Should Athletes Wear Ankle Brace to Prevent Sprains

This may be the first study to look at preventing ankle sprains (and other leg injuries) by wearing a soft, lace-up ankle brace. Ankle sprains may seem like a minor problem but they put many athletes on the bench every year. And the effects can catch up with you much later in life. Chronic ankle stability, decreased physical activity, and ankle osteoarthritis head the list of potential long-term effects of ankle sprain.Can a simple lace-up ankle brace really prevent ankle sprains? To find out, a...

Are Joint Sprains Hereditary?

Our family seems to be at risk for wrist and ankle sprains. It seems like someone is always bandaged up for one or the other. Is this something that is inherited?

Fusion for Painful Old Ankle Injury

Years ago, I broke and dislocated my right ankle. Everything healed nicely at the time. But, now the pain from arthritis has really gotten to me. The surgeon recommends fusion of the two main joints. I forgot to ask if I'll need a brace or anything like that.

Alternative to Ankle Fusion for Marathon Athlete

X-rays of my right ankle show arthritis just on one side of the joint. I'd really like to keep training for a marathon but the pain is starting to get to me. I don't think fusing the joint is such a good idea. Can something else be done to fix the problem?

Motion Problem After Removal of Ankle Cast

Wow! I broke my ankle six weeks ago, and when they took the cast off, I could barely move my foot and ankle. Is this common?

Why Are X-rays Taken for a Sprain?

Why is it necessary to have X-rays taken after a sprained ankle? Can't the doctor just examine the foot and see what's wrong?

Ankle Sprain Swelling and Function

When it comes to ankle sprains, how much is swelling related to ankle function?

Difference Between Ankle Takedown and Ankle Arthrodesis

What's the difference between an ankle takedown and an ankle arthrodesis? My husband's surgeon used both these words when talking about an operation for his severe ankle arthritis.

Best Treatment for Triplanar Ankle Fracture

What's the best treatment for a triplanar ankle fracture?

Ballet Dancer Ankle Problem

My daughter is a ballet dancer and off her feet with this problem. What can be done to treat it?

Surgery for Ankle with Chronic Sprains

What kinds of surgical techniques are used to stabilize an ankle with chronic sprains?

Preventing Football Related Ankle Sprains

I'm a high school football coach. We seem to have a high number of ankle sprains putting our players on the bench. Is this typical? What can we do about it?

Volleyball Athlete with Weak Ankles

I'm a college-level volleyball player with weak ankles. I trained extra to prevent ankle injuries and ended up hurting my knee. Am I just prone to injury no matter what I do?

Benefits of Ankle Fusion for Arthritis

I'm 43-years old and planning to have my left ankle fused because of severe arthritis from an old injury. What can I expect down the road after this operation?

Cause of Ankle Arthritis in 40 Year Old

I'm 42-years old and suddenly I've developed a bad case of arthritis in my left ankle. What can cause this to happen?

Common Athletic Ankle Injuries

I'm 17 years old (a girl) and very athletic. I made it through high school injury-free. I know girls are more likely to injure their ACLs. Are there other injuries we should watch out for?

Alternative to Cast for Grade III Ankle Sprain

I went to the emergency department for what turned out to be a Grade III ankle sprain. The doctor advised using a cast for a week to 10 days before switching to an ankle brace. I have a newspaper route and can't afford to let the cast slow me down. What are my options?

What Is Ankle Fracture With a Syndesmotic Injury?

I was in our state high school rodeo finals last weekend. I injured my ankle big time during the calf roping event. Had to have surgery with two pins through my ankle. Doc says it's an ankle fracture with a syndesmotic injury. Can you explain what that means?

Muscles to Strengthen After Sprain

I was coming down off the bleachers at a basketball game and missed the last step. My foot twisted in and I sprained my ankle. Do I need to strengthen all the muscles around the ankle or just the ones I sprained?

Treatment for Torn Ligament

I was coming down from a lay up during a basketball game two days ago. When I landed, my foot rolled in and I tore a ligament on the outside of my ankle. Will I need surgery to fix this problem, or are there things I can do to avoid surgery?

How Accurate are X-rays for Twisted Ankle?

I twisted my ankle when I missed the last step of our stairway. The doctor took X-rays and said it was not broken. How accurate are X-rays for this kind of injury?

Should I Seek Treatment for Ankle Swelling from Old Injury?

I tweaked an old ankle injury ice skating last night. There's quite a bit of swelling along the outside ankle bone. I know the swelling will go down on its own. Is there any real reason to get treatment for this?

Why Do X-Rays Sometimes Miss Fractures?

I took up snowboarding last year after years of downhill skiing without injury. My first time out, I landed on my left foot and hurt myself. At first the doctor didn't think anything was broken because the X-ray was negative. I went back to the doctor when it didn't get better. They found a piece of bone had broken off the talus bone in the ankle. Why didn't the X-ray show this?

Using Video to Explain Ankle Surgery to Patient

I took my father to the clinic for his preop visit. He's going to have ankle surgery. They showed us a videotape of the operation. I wonder how much older folks like Dad really get out of this. Wouldn't it be better if the nurse or doctor explained everything?

Still Have Problems with Old Ankle Ligament Sprain

I sprained the ligaments on the outside of my ankle four months ago and still have pain, stiffness, and swelling whenever I use the ankle. Could there be something else going on in the ankle that is keeping me from getting better?

Treatment Options for Athlete's Damaged Ankle

I sprained my right ankle at least a dozen times during high school and college sports. Now I can hardly walk without it giving way. Is there anything that can be done about this?

How Does R.I.C.E. Relate to Treatment of Ankle Injury?

I sprained my ankle, and my buddy said something about "rice." Is this a special diet or what?

Use Heat or Ice for Sprained Ankle?

I sprained my ankle two weeks ago. I have been using ice and keeping the ankle wrapped with an ace wrap. When can I use heat instead of ice?

Why Does Ankle Still Feel Weak Months After Sprain?

I sprained my ankle six months ago. It still feels like the ankle could give out from under me at any time. Why is that?

How to Speed Healing of Sprained Ankle

I sprained my ankle pretty good when I stepped down off the curb wrong. I've got a big walking trip to Europe planned in three weeks. Is there any way I can speed up the recovery process?

Why Is It Important to Reduce Swelling of Sprained Ankle?

I sprained my ankle over the weekend and ended up in the emergency room for treatment. The nurses and doctors spent the whole time telling me how to get the swelling down. This may sound dumb, but why is that so important?

Will Sprained Ankle Become Arthritic?

I sprained my ankle last summer. After a few months it seemed to go back to normal. Will I get arthritis in this ankle later?

What Is the RICE Method?

I sprained my ankle at a track meet. My coach wants me to see a physical therapist, but I say I can ice and wrap my ankle on my own. Is physical therapy worth my time?

Ankle Sprain Making Joint Feel Unstable

I sprained my ankle and have a lot of swelling and pain. Why does the joint feel unstable, and what can I do to make it better?

Does Ankle Sprain Lead to Arthritis?

I saw a report in a sports magazine that says ankle sprains lead to arthritis years later. How long does it take and what happens?

What is Cold Therapy for Ankle Sprain?

I recently sprained my ankle. The information I received suggested "cold therapy" as a form of treatment for the first 24 hours. What does this mean, and how do I use it?

Need the cast if there's a screw in place?

I recently injured my lower leg and ankle in a motorcycle accident. There's a screw now holding the lower leg bones together while they heal. I have to wear a cast for six weeks. Why do I need the cast if there's a screw in place?

Ankle Twinges with Certain Movements

I notice my left ankle "twinges" with certain movements like when I walk on a slanted surface or step down off a curb. Does this mean I am spraining my ankle over and over? I sprained it really badly about a year ago.

Snowboarders Risk for Ankle Injuries

I just took up snowboarding. Are my ankles likely to get hurt?

Second Surgery to Remove Screws

I just saw an X-ray of the huge screw the doctor put in my son's ankle. It's for a torn ligament between the two lower leg bones. We've been told a second operation will be needed. This one will take it out when everything's healed. Is there any way to avoid this second surgery?

Stiffness After Ankle Cast Removed

I have had a cast on my ankle for four weeks for a bone fracture. Now that the cast is off, I'm slowly (very slowly) getting my motion back. I can see how immobilizing the joint can cause stiffness but why is it taking so long to get over?

How Can Diabetic Improve Sensation in Ankles?

I have diabetes with some loss of sensation in my feet. Because of this, I have to be very careful to protect my feet and avoid injuries. Is it possible to compensate for this by improving sensation in my ankles?

Ankle Replacements in Charcot's Disease

I have Charcot's disease from diabetes in my ankles. Would I be able to get the new ankle replacements I've heard are out now?

How Will a Plastic Ankle Brace Help Me Walk?

I have ankle osteoarthritis. My doctor thinks I should get a plastic brace for my foot and ankle. How is this going to help me walk better?

What Is an Accessory Ligament?

I had arthroscopic surgery on my ankle to find the cause of my chronic ankle pain. The doctor said there was an accessory ligament causing the problem. What's an "accessory ligament?"

Tennis After Total Ankle Replacement (TAR)

I had a total ankle replacement about six months ago. I'd like to get back on the tennis courts now. Are there any guidelines I should follow?

Athlete's Weak Ankle After Severe Sprain

I had a severe ankle sprain during a tennis match last year. The ankle feels unsteady to me, like I can't trust it. It also rolls in without warning. Why is this, and what can be done for it?

Speed Recovery After Major Ankle Sprain

I had a major ankle sprain after falling from a ladder. So far, my doctor and therapist have had me keep it wrapped, iced, and elevated. Is there anything else I can do to speed up my recovery?

Recurrent Ankle Sprain

I had a bad ankle sprain last year. Since then, I keep twisting my ankle for no apparent reason. Why is this, and what can I do to prevent it from happening?

What Is Sural Nerve Injury?

Have you ever heard of a sural nerve injury? Our 15-year-old daughter is an equestrian rider. She got bucked off a horse and her foot was stuck in the stirrup. Now she has numbness and tingling in her ankle and foot. The diagnosis is sural nerve injury. What does that mean? Will she get better?

Ankle Surgery Recovery for Diabetics

I brought Mother home from the hospital last night. She has diabetes and she broke her ankle requiring surgery. The nurses gave us a long list of Dos and Don'ts. They were very firm in telling us we had to follow the instructions exactly. My sister and I have been taking care of Mother all our lives. What is all the fuss about?

Resuming Horseback Riding After Broken Ankle

I broke my ankle when I was thrown from my horse. I had to have surgery to pin the bones together. Now that the cast is off I'd like to go horseback riding again. Is this allowed?

Post-injury Ankle Osteoarthritis

I broke my ankle in a car accident several years ago. I was 23-years old at the time. Now I'm starting to notice some pain and stiffness in that ankle from time to time. I watched my Grandpa struggle with arthritis in both his ankles for years. Am I destined to have the same fate?

Ankle Support to Prevent Athletic Injuries

I am training on a trampoline for competition in gymnastic events. I've been told ankle injuries are common in this sport. I'd like to find some kind of ankle support to prevent this from happening. What do you recommend?

Arthritic Ankle Surgery for Seniors

I am not a young 62-year-old, if you know what I mean. But I'm still a little active. I don't run marathons, but I do like to golf and dance once in a while. The problem is I've got a bum ankle from arthritis. Am I too old for some kind of surgery for this problem?

Disk Training Treatment for Ankle Sprain

I am being treated for an ankle sprain. My physical therapist has me stand and work my ankle on a big round disk. How does this type of training help?

Preventing Ankle Sprains Caused by Snowboarding

I am a snowboarder, and I've had a couple of painful ankle sprains. Should I do something about it?

Athlete Wrapping Ankle Sprain for Competition

I am a gymnast coming up on a big regional tournament. About two weeks ago, I sprained my ankle. My coach wants me to wear tape during the competition. I'm worried it will hold me back. What should I do?

Can an Ankle Sprain Cause Pain in the Knee?

I am a competitive runner. During my training for a marathon, I increased my mileage. Shortly after that, I twisted my ankle while running. My ankle doesn’t hurt, but my knee does. There’s a painful tenderness along the outside of the knee, just below the joint. Can an ankle sprain cause pain at the knee?

Broken or Sprained Ankle?

How can you tell whether an ankle is broken or just sprained?

Ankle Amputation for Arthritis?

Have you ever heard of anyone having his or her foot amputated for arthritis? My grandma just had this done and it doesn't make any sense to me.

What Is a High Ankle Sprain?

Have you ever heard of a high ankle sprain? My daughter hurt her ankle while playing hockey and this is what the doctors are calling it?

Problem With Ankle Reconstruction

Four months ago, I had surgery to reconstruct my ankle. I had a worn and arthritic ankle joint on one side. I was trying to avoid having a fusion. But I'm no better off than before the surgery. Pain and loss of motion affect the way I walk. Even my balance is off. How long do I have to wait before going ahead with the fusion after all?

Repeated Ankle Sprains

Every now and then my ankle gives way on me. I sprained it about two years ago. It feels like I'm respraining it a little bit each time this happens. Why does this happen?

Does Ankle Taping Prevent Injury?

Does ankle taping really work? I see many of my teammates using various methods of taping to keep from re-spraining their ankles. If it works, which type of taping is best?

How Long After Sprain Before I Can Jump?

After spraining my ankle I notice I can step down off stairs or curbs but I still can't jump across a puddle or other obstacles. How long does it take to get this skill back?

Weak Ankles After Playing Volleyball

After playing volleyball for a few hours, my ankles feel wobbly and weak. What causes this? Is there something I can do about it?

Preventing Ankle Arthritis After Sprain

About two years ago, I sprained my ankle big time. It never has healed properly. In fact, I think I may have resprained it several times just in the last few months. Now I'm worried that I'll end up with arthritis in that joint. Can I do anything to prevent this from happening?

Pain and Loss of Motion After Ankle Replacement

About 18 months ago I had a total ankle replacement for severe ankle arthritis. Everything seemed to be going good until last month. I started to have ankle pain and a loss of motion. It almost feels like the joint is jammed together. Is this possible?

Ankle Giving Out After Sprain

A year ago I sprained my right ankle. It doesn't hurt but it gives out on me. What could be causing this?

Fracture Pain and Stiffness Returning

A year ago I fractured my ankle and had a very slow recovery. Everything finally seemed to be working fine but now it's starting to stiffen up and hurt quite a bit. Am I going to have problems like this for the rest of my life?
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