When one or more bones in the ankle joint break, it is known as an ankle fracture. Symptoms of a fractured ankle may include severe pain, tenderness, bruising, swelling and difficulty moving or bearing weight on the affected ankle. If you believe you may have broken your ankle, you should seek ankle fracture treatment from a skilled orthopedic doctor as soon as possible.
Ankle Fracture Treatment: What to Expect
In order to diagnose an ankle injury, an orthopedic physician will generally start by performing a physical examination. They may also use advanced imaging techniques such as an X-ray, an MRI scan or a CT scan to get a more detailed view of the injured joint.
Depending on the location, type and severity of the fracture, the right course of treatment for a broken ankle will vary. Ankle fracture treatment methods may include:
- Icing the affected ankle to decrease swelling and discomfort
- Wearing a cast, splint or walking boot to stabilize the ankle bone while it heals
- Using crutches to keep weight off of the injured ankle
- Undergoing ankle surgery to realign the broken bone(s) and facilitate proper healing (used only for severe fractures)
How Long Is Recovery for a Fractured Ankle?
For more minor ankle fractures that can be treated without surgery, the typical recovery timeline is somewhere between 6 and 12 weeks. If a broken ankle is severe and requires surgery, however, it may take 12 weeks or longer to heal completely. Aside from the specifics of the injury, several other factors will also play a role in determining how long recovery takes. These include the patient’s age and overall health status.
Regardless of which ankle fracture treatment methods are prescribed, it is important to visit your orthopedic doctor for regular checkups throughout the recovery process to ensure your ankle is healing correctly. Furthermore, you should get approval from your physician before returning to your normal activities.
Visit Dr. Soffer for Expert Ankle Care & Rehabilitation
If you are experiencing pain and other symptoms of a broken ankle, it is advisable to see a qualified orthopedic doctor right away. As a highly ranked orthopedic specialist, Dr. Stephen Soffer offers the full spectrum of treatments for ankle fractures, including cutting-edge nonsurgical and surgical options.
Whether your ankle injury is mild or severe, you can depend on Dr. Soffer to carefully diagnose it and provide effective, individualized treatment. To request an appointment with our foot and ankle specialist, call our 24-hour sports injury hotline at 610-375-4949.