Taking Care of Your Ankles

Orthopedic Ankle Care at The Medical Center of Aurora

More than a million people visit the emergency room every year because of an ankle injury. The most common types of ankle injuries are sprained ankles, strained ankles and fractured ankles. These injuries are often caused in while playing sports. Athletes who play football, basketball, soccer and volleyball often have ankle injuries because of the jumping and twisting pressures they put on their ankles. These type of injuries should be treated by a sports medicine doctor, such as the orthopedic specialists at The Medical Center of Aurora

If you’d like to learn more about the orthopedic treatment methods for ankle conditions, or if you’d like to schedule an appointment with one of our ankle specialists, call 303-873-0630.

However, ankle injuries are not just “sport injuries”, they can happen to anyone, any day. It’s possible to twist or turn an ankle simply by walking on an uneven sidewalk, tripping over an obstacle or stepping into a small hole. This type of injury can be extremely painful and potentially cause a debilitating sprain. That is why it’s important to never ignore an ankle injury.

If you twist, roll or otherwise injure your ankle, your physician will examine the extent of the injury and determine the best course of treatment. 

Ankle Injuries 

What Is An Ankle Sprain?

One of the most common ankle injuries is an ankle sprain or a severe ankle sprain. An ankle sprain is a partial or complete tear of the ligaments, which support the ankle. Ankle sprains are caused by suddenly and violently twisting of the ankle. When you sprain your ankle, there may be pain, swelling, and bruising around the ankle. The pain will worsen if you walk, stand, put pressure on, or move the ankle. 

Healing and recovery will take time, but is rather simple. Most importantly, the ankle will need to rest after an ankle sprain. Care may also include ice, compression, elevation and support such as a walking brace or a boot. Good physical therapy will help strengthen the ankle once it has begun to heal and help prevent further injuries. Your physician will develop a care plan to help recovery. Surgery is rarely needed to repair an ankle sprain.

More about ankle sprains

Did I Fracture My Ankle?

Similar to a sprain, an ankle fracture is painful and will include immediate and intense pain, swelling, bruising and tenderness. If you have a fracture you will not be able to put any weight on the affected foot. An ankle fracture happens when the ankle sustains a direct blow or the joint is forced well beyond its normal range of motion either from a violent twist or falling with such great impact it forces the ankle out of its normal range of motion.   

The treatment method recommended by your physician will depend on he severity of the fracture, and may include surgery, support devices, physical therapy and pain relief medications.

See illustrations of ankle fractures

Ankle Replacement

Ankle replacement is a surgical procedure to place an artificial device in the ankle. The device replaces bone and joint structures damaged by disease or injury. This surgery helps strengthen injured ankles and relieves ongoing pain. In general, a total ankle replacement will last ten more years depending on your physical activity. 

After surgery, pain medications may be prescribed to help manage any discomfort while you heal. Recovery time will depend on your overall health and amount of work done.  During recovery ankle will not be able to support any weight and may be immobilized for up to 6 weeks. It is important to discuss with your physician if ankle replacement is your best option.

Learn more about the entire procedure

Call to Schedule an Appointment

If you’d like to learn more about the orthopedic treatment methods for ankle conditions, or if you’d like to schedule an appointment with one of our ankle specialists, call 303-873-0630.

Injuries to the Achilles Tendon

Ankle injuries may include a torn tendon in ankle. Below are some ankle tendon injuries. 

What Is Achilles Tendinopathy?

Achilles Tendinopathy is pain to the tendon at the back of the ankle accompanied by swelling. Symptoms include pain, swelling, stiffness and tenderness at the heel or general pain in the ankle. The swelling and stiffness in the ankle will make it difficult to move. Achilles Tendinopathy is most often caused by overuse of a muscle and tendon. 

Achilles Tendinopathy may take weeks or months to fully heal. Treatment includes a period of rest and physical therapy to strengthen the tendons and muscles and prevent further injury. Prescription or over-the-counter medications may be prescribed to reduce pain. Surgery is typically not prescribed for Achilles tendinopathy.

More details about Achilles tendinopathy

Did I Rupture My Achilles Tendon?

Symptoms of an Achilles Tendon Rupture include sudden, extreme pain and swelling at the back of the heel and an inability to walk or place pressure on the leg.

An Achilles tendon rupture occurs when there is a tearing of the tendon fibers. Achilles tendon rupture can be caused by overuse, overstretching or overworking an inflamed tendon. It can also be caused by a serious injury or trauma. 

It is important to see a doctor if you believe you have ruptured your Achilles tendon. Initial treatment can include bed rest and restricted activity, ice to reduce swelling, elevation and compression bandages. Crutches or a walker may be recommended, and over-the-counter or prescription pain medication may be prescribed to reduce discomfort. However, surgery is the most common treatment for this condition. 

During surgery, an orthopedic surgeon will sew the tendon back together. After surgery to repair an Achilles tendon rupture, a cast, splint, walking boot, or brace is worn for 6-8 weeks to support the ankle. One of the benefits of surgery is that it lowers the risk of re-rupturing the tendon and supports patients who are physically active.

More about the Achilles tendon 

Call to Schedule an Appointment

If you’d like to learn more about the orthopedic treatment methods for ankle conditions, or if you’d like to schedule an appointment with one of our ankle specialists, call 303-873-0630.

Meet The Orthopedic Doctors Specializing in Ankle Injures at The Medical Center of Aurora 

The best orthopedic surgeons in Denver are found at The Medical Center of Aurora. 

Our orthopedic surgeons and sports medicine specialists have significant experience generally in orthopedic care and specifically ankle injuries and torn ankle tendon injuries. We provide high quality, compassionate, team-based and personalized care for ankle injuries and conditions, which are complex and require specialized training. When appropriate, our sport medicine doctors will treat your sport related injuries with compassion and precision. Our goal is to treat your ankle condition and get you back to your life as quickly as possible. 

Our collaborative team of orthopedic surgeons and sports medicine specialists -- which includes nurses, staff and rehabilitation specialists -- create a comprehensive treatment programs for each patient. Our facilities include newly renovated surgical suites and the latest in advanced orthopedic surgical technology to make sure each patient receives the best possible care for the quickest recovery time. 

The Medical Center of Aurora is the only facility in Colorado offering the Own the Bone Program. The Own the Bone Program helps care providers recognize and prevent osteoporosis related incidents in patients.   

Find out more about our orthopedic ankle physicians

Call to Schedule an Appointment

If you’d like to learn more about the orthopedic treatment methods for ankle conditions, or if you’d like to schedule an appointment with one of our ankle specialists, call 303-873-0630.