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Ankle Sprain, Ankle Pain and Singapore Physiotherapy Rehabilitation
Ankle sprain is a very common injury that is often receive little to nil physiotherapy management. It is one of the most common injuries that is treated in our physiotherapy clinic. It is often caused by sports injuries, but usually also caused by an accidental slip or twist of the ankle, due to height differences, slippery flooring/footwear or mis-landing of the feet.
The more common ankle sprain is the inversion type where the ankle is forcibly twisted with the feet going inversion (inwards towards the other feet), and the second most common is the out-going "eversion" type where the ankle is twisted with the feet going outwards.
Because of the biomechanical make-up and structure of our feet and ankle, inversion ankle sprains are the more common type of ankle injury. This type of injury often causes the lateral (outside) ligaments of the ankle to be overstretched, causing microtears and weaking the ligament.
There are three levels of severity of ankle sprain that a person can experience:
First Degree Sprain: this is considered a mild sprain, with minor or mild micro-tear of the ligament. The patient will feel the pain when the foot is turned inwards or outwards, as well as tenderness in the ankle where the micro-tears are
Second Degree Sprain: this is a moderate level of injury and sprain, with a great degree of micro-tear(s) in the affected ligaments, resulting in more pain intensity, frequency and duration as compared to the first degree sprain. It will be difficult to walk in this situation.
Third Degree Sprain: this level of ankle sprain often produces excruciating, shooting/cramping/sharp pain, and walking is very, very difficult (patients tend to do "hops" to move about). There is likelihood of ligamental rupture or ankle dislocation, depending on the level of damage, as well as presence of swelling.
What Not To Do After The Injury
After an injury to the ankle, it is best for the patient to not put any weight on the injured ankle, unless informed by the doctor/physiotherapy to do so. This means that walking and weight-bearing on the injured ankle is a strict no-no whenever possible.
Physiotherapy Management of Ankle Sprain
During the acute phase, the main focus will be on swelling management, maintaining range of motion, and accelerating healing. Swelling management will be done using the RICE method, which is resting (so no stepping on it), icing (done with cold compress), compressing (with special pressurizing cloth and socks) and elevation (most of the activities and exercises will be done with the feet raised. Range of motion will be managed with gentle active exercises - moving the ankle up, down, left, right, turning left, turning right, inverting and everting. Accelerating healing will be done with the use of ultrasound therapy or sonophoresis. In some cases, we may also plug up the patient with our electrical muscle stimulator to ensure the muscle bulk is not lost.
After the swelling and pain has gone down, and once the ligament is healing better, we will progress to passive range-of-motion (PROM) exercises, to stretch the joint and soft tissues further, to ensure that you can gain back all lost range (usually, an injury causes joints and soft tissues to tighten up, and that will make it very difficult to use the joint properly). If appropriate, we will continue with ultrasound therapy, but we may also employ soft tissue massage to breakdown scar adhesions that has formed in the injured area (scar adhesions causes everything to stick together, and can cause a lot of pain, massaging them causes them to breakdown and disappear, taking their associated-pain with them)
Once you're passed the post-acute phase, we will move on to strengthening the ankle and feet with resistance and weights (no pain involved), and slowly work on balance re-training. Last on the list would be sports- and movement-specific rehabilitation.
Things to Note
If we suspect that you have a possible fracture, we will contact and correspond with the orthopedic surgeon who referred you (if you don't have, we will provide you with a list of specialist who can help) to carry out an X-Ray in an accident and emergency (A&E) department.
Specialist Rehab Group works with specialist physiotherapists and specialist rehab therapists who are highly trained, qualified, experienced and passionate to provide high level of expert care to our patients.
Areas of specialization
physiotherapy: back and neck (spine), sports, shoulder, hip, knee, ankle
Initially, our specialist physiotherapists will carry out a thorough
assessment, helping them to select the most appropriate treatment to
help you recover. They then provide
expert treatment for your pain as well as prescribing specific
exercises to reduce your risk of re-injury and giving you a long term
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Disclaimer We are a wholly Singapore Private Limited group of licensed physiotherapists, hand therapists, podiatrists, chiropractors, sports massage therapists, clinical pilates practitioners and TCM physicians practicing in our scope of rehabilitation and its areas of specializations. As listed in our website are the list of services we provide our clients as referred by their medical doctors or by self referrals/word of mouth.
The range of rehabilitation results vary from patients to patients, depending on a variety of factors and reasons such as severity of condition, genetics, gender and age. However, we will still deliver the best evidence-based-practice of physiotherapy, hand therapy, TCM, sports training and deep tissue release therapy that we can deliver.
The information available on this site is for educational purposes only, if you need a full professional advise on physiotherapy, hand therapy and occupational therapy, please schedule an appointment with us by contacting our staff by Call/SMS/WhatsApp at 97402164 or 98352929, thanks!