ankle Archives - DOC

#856 3 Phases of ankle sprain recovery in runners

If you roll your ankle on a trail run and it turns black and blue and swollen, you may think you just have to take a few days off.

In fact, if you research how long it will take to get back to running, you might find a study that says that if you do early range of motion after an ankle sprain, it only takes 4 days to get back to pre-injury levels of activity.

However, if you do that, you can wind up with a lot of trouble later.

When I lecture at medical conferences on how doctors should treat ankle sprains in runners, I teach 3 phases of ankle sprain injury recovery.

If you are a runner with an ankle sprain, and you understand them, it’ll help you get back to training and running without another ankle sprain.

What are the three phases of ankle sprain recovery in runners?

Well, that’s what we’re talking about today on the Doc On The Run Podcast.

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#780 Can I let runners run in an ankle brace after an ankle sprain?

Today’s episode comes from the question-and-answer period when I was lecturing at the International Foot & Ankle Foundation Medical Conference in Las Vegas. The talk was Conservative Management of Ankle Sprains in Runners Who Want to Run.

During that talk, I explained to the doctors everything that I do with runners who have ankle sprains. Afterward I got a great question from Dr. Bryan Markinson, who is a prominent physician from New York.

He said:

“Okay. Is this stupid or is this not stupid? Because, I get runners who really want to run. I figure when they’re in good shape, it’s okay for them to run in an ankle brace. Is that really a thing that you recommend or not?”

Can I let runners run in an ankle brace after they’ve had an ankle sprain?

Well, that’s a great question, and that’s what we’re talking about today on the Doc On The Run Podcast

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#749 Best test for a runner with ankle sprain

If you’re out on a run and you roll your ankle, you need to know how you can test the ankle to figure out what is wrong.

More importantly, what tests can tell you how likely it is that you’re actually going to get back to running and not have an ankle sprain again.

There are several tests doctors use in evaluating injured ankles. Some are more important than others.

What is the single most important test for a runner with an ankle sprain?

Well, that’s what we’re talking about today on the Doc On The Run Podcast.

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#742 When to worry an ankle sprain is a Lateral Process Fracture

I just saw a runner who sprained her ankle. It’s been about a month and she’s still having pain. Pain and swelling persisting a month later, are not good. There are a couple of reasons that that can happen.

Anytime doctors see persistent swelling and pain after an ankle injury, they become concerned there might be a fracture.

When should a runner who rolled an ankle be concerned that there might be a fracture like a lateral process fracture?

Well, that’s what we’re talking about today on the Doc On The Run Podcast.

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#727 3 ways runners lose fitness after an ankle sprain

The first thing any runner should do when you roll your ankle is protect the ankle from further injury. In fact, the algorithm doctors use to treat ankle sprains is P. R. I. C. E.

P stands for Protection, meaning don’t roll it again. Don’t make it worse. Then, Rest it. Ice it. Use Compression to keep it from swelling. Elevate it to get the fluid out if it’s really swollen.

So, what happens is, you’re a runner, you’re out on a trail and you roll your ankle. What happens if you don’t follow the PRICE method?

It just might take a whole lot longer before it gets better.

What are the most common three ways I see runners lose all their fitness after they get an ankle sprain?

Well, that’s what we’re talking about today on the Doc On The Run Podcast.

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#718 Broken toes with an ankle sprain?

Let’s say you’re out on a trail run, you roll your ankle and sprain it. So what do you do?

You limp home, you get back to the car, you ice it, you take some pressure off of it, you elevate it, you do all the right stuff. But, it’s really painful and swollen the next few days.

Then, maybe a day or two later, it’s black, it’s blue and swollen. But even worse, you look down and you’re kind of dismayed because your toes are swollen like sausages.

Believe it or not, I have had a number of patients who called me, not because they sprained their ankle, but because they were actually worried they may have broken toes as well.

Is it possible to break your toes at the same time you get an ankle sprain?

Well, that’s what we’re talking about today on the Doc On The Run Podcast.

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#677 How ankle stiffness can lead to another stress fractures in a runner

Let’s say you’re out on a run and you start feeling some aching pain in your foot. The next day you wake up, it really hurts when you step out of bed.

You go see a doctor and you’re told you have a stress fracture.

Being told you have a stress fracture is a real bummer because the doctor will probably tell you it will take about six weeks to heal. Then things get worse…

You are told you need to wear a fracture walking boot for about four to six weeks, and of course, you can’t run during that time.

After you wallow in tears, you decide to be a “good patient.” You go with the plan.

You sit around in the boot.

You don’t do anything.

You don’t take the boot off.

You don’t run.

You don’t exercise.

And a month or two later…you finally get clearance to run!

But when you first go for your run, everything feels super stiff! Your running form is terrible. You feel really slow. But more than anything else, you really notice how super stiff everything feels around the ankle.

Today on the Doc On The Run Podcast, we’re talking about how ankle stiffness can lead to another stress fracture in a recovering runner.

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#676 I rolled my ankle and foot hurts here. What is it?

An injured runner called me with a problem. “I rolled my ankle and it hurts HERE. The explanation from my doctor didn’t make any sense, because the pain on the top of my foot is not where the trouble was on the X-ray.”

I asked for some pictures showing where he felt the pain. And then it started to make sense.

Ankle ligaments are not the only structures that get injured when you roll your ankle!

If you are a runner with an injury and you want to get back to running you really need to understand what structure could be damaged. Then you can decide whether or not it’s dangerous for you to ramp up your activity.

If a doctor gives you a vague answer that usually tells me that the doctor doesn’t know what’s going on.

But if you really think about where the pain is, AND the mechanics of rolling your ankle during an ankle sprain event… you can figure it out!

I rolled my ankle and my foot hurts here. What is it?

Well, that’s what we’re talking about today on the Doc On The Run Podcast.

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#643 The 3 biggest mistake runners make with ankle sprains

Ankle sprains are probably the most common musculoskeletal injury affecting runners. It is really easy to roll an ankle and find yourself limping, unable to run.

You might have sprained your ankle tripping on a root or rock when you’re out running on a trail.

Maybe you were wearing some fancy shoes going out to dinner and you stepped on a little reflector on a crosswalk, twisting your ankle.

No matter how you injure the ankle, if your ankle is painful and swollen it is definitely going to interfere with your running.

What are the three biggest mistakes runners make with ankle sprains?

Well, that’s what we’re talking about today on the Doc On The Run Podcast.

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#641 Do I recommend ankle braces for runners?

A couple of weeks ago, I was invited to give some lectures at the Heartland Podiatry Conference in Des Moines, Iowa. The conference organizers asked me to give an entire “Doc On The Run session” during which I presented five lectures back to back…all on how doctors could approach treatment of injured runners differently.

During the attendee question and answer session, a doctor asked:

“Do you use ankle braces for ankle sprains, and under what circumstances would you recommend braces for recovering runners?

This question came out of what’s called Conservative Management of Ankle Sprains in Runners Who Want to Run.

Do I recommend ankle braces for runners?

Well, that’s what we’re talking about today on the Doc On The Run Podcast.

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