Tue, Jun 25, 2024

Ankle Sprains: Grades Unveiled - From Mild to Severe

Ankle Sprain

               All it takes is one slip-up, and you're dealing with an ankle sprain. In fact, it's one of the most commonly reported musculoskeletal injuries. Whether you're a sprained ankle at any age, an athlete, or just a couch potato, you'll likely experience an ankle sprain at some point in your life. An ankle sprain is caused when one or more ligaments in your ankle become stretched or torn, resulting in pain, swelling, and difficulty walking. Most people try to push through an ankle injury and don't seek medical help. However, if you're experiencing more than mild pain and swelling, you should immediately see a clinician. A severely injured ankle will not heal properly without proper treatment and rehabilitation. Without proper care, your ankle may lose its range of movement and stability, leading to repeated sprains and additional downtime in the future.

Anatomy of Ankle Sprain

               The most common ankle sprain is a lateral ankle sprain, also known as an inversion injury. An ankle sprain occurs when the foot rolls inward, causing damage to the ligaments on the outside of the ankle. The ligaments in question are the anterior, or talofibular, ligaments and the posterior, or talofibular ligaments. (The ligaments are bands of connective tissue that attach bone to bone).

           In ankle sprains, there are two types of sprains that are less common: those that affect the ligaments in the inner ankle, like medial ankle sprains, and those that hurt the tibioskeletal ligaments. These ligaments are the ones that connect two leg bones, like the tibia and fibula, to the ankle. If you get a syndesmotic ankle sprain, it's more likely that you'll have chronic ankle instability, which can lead to other sprains. The severity of the sprain will depend on how bad it is and how unstable it is. The worse the sprain is, the longer it'll take to recover from it.

Classification of Ankle Sprain

               Once the examination is complete, your physician will assess the severity of the sprain in order to determine the appropriate course of treatment. A sprain is classified according to the extent to which the ligaments have been damaged.

Grade I

  • There is a minimal stretch to the ligament, and no tear occurs.
  • It has symptoms like mild pain, swelling, tenderness, no bruising, no joint instability, and the patient had no difficulty in bearing weight.
  • It usually takes 1-3 weeks for proper recovery.

Grade II

  • Partial tear of ligament occurs.
  • It shows symptoms like moderate pain, swelling, tenderness, bruising, mild to moderate joint instability, and pain in weight-bearing and walking. Slight loss of range of motion and mobility.
  • It usually takes 3-6 weeks for recovery.

Grade III

  • The damage to the ligament is a complete tear and rupture.
  • The patient had severe pain, bruising, tenderness, swelling, instability, loss of mobility and function, loss of range of motion, no weight bearing at all, and inability to walk.
  • Recovery time in grade III is up to 6 months.

Symptoms of Ankle Sprain

               If you've sprained your ankle, the signs and symptoms can look different depending on how bad it is. 

  • You might feel pain, especially if you're carrying a lot of weight on it.
  • Your ankle might be tender when you touch it. 
  • You might also feel swelling, bruising, and limited range of motion. 
  • You might also experience instability in your ankle.
  • It was a popping sensation or sound when it was injured.

Causes of Ankle Sprain

               A sprain happens when your ankle moves out of alignment, which causes one or more ligaments to get stretched out, partially torn, or torn completely.

           A sprained ankle can be caused by a number of things, including:

  • If you twist your ankle after falling
  • If you land on your foot awkwardly after jumping or turning.
  • If you're walking or working out on uneven ground.
  • If someone else steps on your foot while you're playing sports.

Risk factors of Ankle Sprain

  • It can occur when you jump, cut action, or roll or twist your ankle. This is especially true in sports that involve jumping, rolling, or twisting the foot. 
  • Ankle sprains can also occur when you walk or run on an uneven surface or in poor field conditions. 
  • If you've had an ankle injury before, you're more likely to have another one. If your ankle is weak or flexible, it's more likely that you'll have another ankle injury. 
  • When you're playing sports, wearing shoes that don't fit properly or don't match the activity you're doing can make your ankles more prone to injury. In addition, wearing high-heeled shoes can also make your ankles more vulnerable.

How to Prevent Ankle Sprain?

               The following strategies can be employed to avoid spraining an ankle or a reoccurrence of the injury.

  • Get your body warmed up before you hit the gym or play a sport.
  • Be careful if you're walking, running, or working on uneven ground!
  • If you have a weak ankle or one that has been injured in the past, you can use a brace or tape to support it.
  • Make sure you're wearing comfortable shoes designed for what you're doing.
  • avoid wearing shoes with high heels
  • It is recommended that individuals refrain from participating in sports or engaging in activities for which they are not eligible.
  • Muscle strength and flexibility should be maintained.
  • Train your body to maintain stability, including balancing exercises.



Kainat Ashiq

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