The ankle is a commonly injured joint. The mechanism of ankle pain injury may result from sports, falls, overuse (eg running or jumping), work demands, general wear and tear, arthritis, and in rare cases ankle pain may also be referred from other sources (such as lower back).
Traumatic Ankle Injuries
The most common traumatic ankle injury occurs when our Canberra clients suffer a ‘rolled ankle’. This typically occurs when a foot and ankle turn inwards relative to the lower leg damaging the lateral ligaments on the outside of the ankle. More serious ankle sprains may also involve the ligament between the two shin bones (syndesmosis), peroneal tendon and perhaps the joint surfaces of the ankle joint.
Other common traumatic ankle injuries include achilles tendon ruptures, calf muscle tears and fractures.
Overuse Ankle Injuries
Sport & Spinal Physiotherapy has helped many clients from Gungahlin and the wider Canberra community with all types of overuse ankle injuries including:
Achilles Tendon Pain (achilles tendonitis) – is the most common overuse ankle injury leading to degenerative changes within the tendon usually related to impact activities such as running and jumping.
Anterior Impingement – impingement of the bony structures at the front of the ankle
Posterior Impingement – impingement of the bony structures at the back of the ankle
Peroneal Tendinopathy – injury to the tendon down the outside of the ankle
Tibialis Posterior Tendinopathy – injury to the tendon on the inside of the ankle often related to over pronation
Lateral Gutter Impingement – impingement of the soft tissue structures under the lateral malleolus
Severs Disease (growing pains) – microtrauma of the growth plate at the heel bone
Less common causes of overuse ankle pain include complex regional pain syndrome, referred pain, stress fractures and tarsal tunnel syndrome
How can Sport & Spinal Physiotherapy help your ankle injury?
If your injury is traumatic and acute, you should see one of our physiotherapists. If the injury is chronic, it is probably more appropriate to start with one of our podiatrists. In any case, either discipline may refer you to the other for best treatment of your particular ankle injury.
On your first visit, we will establish a correct diagnosis to direct the most effective care to your ankle injury. Establishing the correct diagnosis early is imperative as several injuries mimic symptoms yet have different treatment protocols. We use our unique ‘phase-based rehab system’ to ensure all aspects of a full and lasting recovery are delivered. We will tailor a treatment plan to suit your needs, with you involved in the decision making to make certain that we address your biggest concerns. Our physios will use hands on therapy techniques to improve joint mobility and muscle flexibility. We will nearly always at each session provide home exercises of stretches and strength work so that you keep improving between sessions. Early treatment will be focused on reducing pain and swelling and regaining range of motion. The physiotherapist will then prescribe an exercise program to improve the strength and coordination of your ankle, which are important for preventing re-injury. Hydrotherapy, massage, dry needling and our gym may also be used for best outcome. Towards the end of the treatment program you will be given prevention strategies to keep the pain away. The sooner we begin your ankle rehabilitation the faster your recovery and back to the things you love doing.
Why choose us for your ankle pain?
- We listen, we care and we get results
- We fix the cause of your injury and not just the symptoms
- We have physiotherapy and podiatry for even the most complex ankle injuries
- Our podiatrists can prescribe custom moulded orthotics to help your ankle pain
- We can provide a running assessment if your ankle pain is related to running
- We have therapists who have special training in ankle injuries having completed further studies
- We have extensive experience in dealing with lower limb injuries
- We can refer you for further investigations such as x-ray or MRI if required
- Our therapists are passionate about sport and engage in an active lifestyle
- We understand the demands and technique involved in all sport types
- Our therapists have been recognised for their expertise having been national sporting team consultants
- We provide braces or taping to protect your ankle on return to activity
- Our physios and podiatrists can recommend the ideal footwear to suit your foot type
- We have advanced gym equipment to improve ankle strength and coordination
- Our massage therapists can sort out any tight muscles
- Our hydrotherapy sessions can be very effective for early rehabilitation of ankle injuries
- We can provide dry needling for pain management and accelerated healing
- We can supply practitioner only natural anti-inflammatory supplements to help healing
- Many of our physios work with local, state, national and international teams and athletes
- We give you cross training activities so you can maintain your fitness whilst injured
- We provide you with the tools to look after your health long after you leave our care
- We provide you with a guided return to sport with any technique modifications or training restrictions
- We can recommend referral to a medical specialist if need be to see if your ankle injury requires surgery