Q My daughter recently sprained her ankle while cheerleading. Although it is now healed, is there a higher risk of it becoming re-sprained this season? If so, what can we do to prevent another injury?
A An ankle sprain is when one or more ligaments of the ankle are injured due to being stretched beyond their normal capacity. There are several grades of ankle sprains ranging from being overstretched to being torn or ruptured. Generally speaking, the worse the swelling, the more severe the injury; however, your foot and ankle specialist would be able to determine the severity of the injury. Ankle sprains are one of the most common injuries in athletes. This is in part because an athlete who sustains an initial ankle sprain is at an increased risk of another. Because an estimated 20% of recurrent ankle sprains can result in persistent pain and instability, prevention is of utmost importance. In your daughter’s case, it sounds as if she is out of the initial healing stage, but she is still at risk for a recurrent sprain within the next year. Certain modalities can contribute to decreasing the incidence of recurring ankle sprains, such as ankle bracing or taping, peroneal tendon strengthening, and joint position exercises.
C. Jason Wamack, DPM Foot & Ankle Specialist
Foot and Ankle Surgery
Center for Sports Medicine & Orthopaedics
2415 McCallie Ave.
Chattanooga, TN 37404
(423) 624.2696, sportmed.com