Ankle Ligament Reconstruction
A sprain is stretching or tearing of a ligament. Ligaments connect adjacent bones in a joint and provide stability to the joint.
An ankle sprain is a common injury and occurs when you fall or suddenly twist the ankle joint or when you land your foot in an awkward position after a jump. It most commonly occurs when you participate in sports or when you jump or run on a surface that is irregular.
Ankle sprains can cause pain, swelling, tenderness, bruising, and stiffness, and difficulty bearing weight on the ankle
Inadequate healing of a sprained ligament or incomplete rehabilitation of the affected ligament can result in instability of the ankle.
A complete medical history, including a history of any previous ankle injuries, and a physical examination is essential for an accurate diagnosis of the condition. An X-ray may be ordered to confirm the diagnosis.
Acute injuries can be managed with conservative treatment measures such as RICE method (rest, ice, compression and elevation), medications, bracing, and physical therapy. The vast majority of people who experience ankle sprains recover very well with non-surgical treatment
Surgical intervention to reconstruct the injured ligament may be considered in patients with a high degree of instability who have failed to respond to non-surgical treatments.
Ankle ligament reconstruction may be performed using a small incision over the lateral, or outer side, of the ankle. Stretched or torn ligaments will be shortened and stitched as needed to restore stability to the joint. Sometimes, a weakened ligament is reconstructed with a section of tendon derived from the foot and around the ankle.
The recovery time after ankle ligament reconstruction depends on the extent of injury and the procedure performed. For the first few weeks after surgery, you will be instructed to use crutches or a wheelchair and avoid bearing any weight on the reconstructed ankle joint.
Specific complications of ankle ligament reconstruction include infection, nerve damage, ankle joint stiffness, and recurrent instability.