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  • Torn ankle ligament not healing?

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    Old 12-14-2014, 10:46 AM   #1
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    Torn ankle ligament not healing?


    Some background:

    I rolled my ankle on a dog toy in March. It swelled, discolored and pained however I mostly brushed the injury off as I'd figured it was just another 'twisted ankle'. I went to my GP, who sent me for an x-ray (which turned up negative) then ruled it as likely a ligament injury. I iced it and rested it as much as I could - but did not stay off it but the pain/swelling continued.

    In September I was discharged from the pediatric hospital. I saw an orthopedic surgeon, who I've been seeing for the past 18 years as I have CP. I mentioned the ankle injury. He did some ligament integrity tests and diagnosed me with a torn ATFL. He gave me a script for an ankle brace. I've been wearing the lace-up brace when exercising and doing a lot of walking, as he suggested.
    The ankle pain and swelling decreased.

    However, over the past week, I've developed pain and irritation in my ankle again. Is it possible that the ligament never completely healed? Should I wear my brace more and see if it improves?

    Unsure of what to do at this point. Any input would be helpful. Thanks!

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    Old 12-14-2014, 06:38 PM   #2
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    JustMeJen HB UserJustMeJen HB UserJustMeJen HB UserJustMeJen HB UserJustMeJen HB UserJustMeJen HB UserJustMeJen HB UserJustMeJen HB UserJustMeJen HB UserJustMeJen HB UserJustMeJen HB User
    Re: Torn ankle ligament not healing?

    It is possible the ligament didn't heal. The ankle ligaments don't have a very good blood supply and don't tend to heal well. Sometimes they scar over and small tears heal but larger ones often don't.

    You probably should get checked out, especially since you may have imbalances with the muscles that hold the ankle into the proper alignment with your CP. Wearing your brace for a while won't hurt and might make you feel better but I think you should combine that with a check-up, especially since it doesn't sound like you had an incident that made you aware of a new injury.

    Unfortunately a lot of the time when the AFTL (most commonly torn ligament) or CFTL (also commonly torn lateral ligament) tear they leave weakness that causes the ankle to be inverted and to roll and be sprained frequently. In my case I fractured my ankle when I was 16 but didn't know it until an xray showed a healed fracture when I was 35. I was a runner then and kept running on the fracture from 2 days after I did it until I had another fall from my ankle giving out that tore up my knee. Over the years I twisted and mildly sprained my ankle many times but I never paid much attention until I fell hard and tore my AFTL, CFTL, achilles tendon and probably peroneal tendons. That was 5 years ago and since then I was heavily braced and had orthotics and shoes that provided a lot of support but in March I went outside without my brace and turned my ankle completely under, tearing the ligaments and peroneal tendons again very badly. My AFTL ruptured a few weeks later after a fall down the stairs and then I had surgery to repair everything in June. Hopefully it won't come down to all that for you, but having had the injury you will be more likely to have future injuries and should be checked out if one seems to occur to help prevent a big injury.

    HOpe this helps
    Modified Brostrom, Peroneal repair and scope 6/13/14

    Old 12-17-2014, 08:00 PM   #3
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    Re: Torn ankle ligament not healing?

    Going to agree with Jen. I think you should get it checked out. As she said, ligaments can scar down and small tears can heal, but the ankle is notorious in that once it's sprained, it's weakened and has high possibility of reinjury. I would definitely go back into your brace and make an appt with your OS. Neither will hurt. The brace should help the pain in the meantime, but I think it definitely needs another look! I have had several ankle injuries and 2 reconstructive ankle surgeries and I can say it's better to stay on top of it! Good luck!
    Brostrom-Gould, repair retinaculum, peroneus longus tendon repair, fibular groove deepening for peroneal tendon subluxation- 2/22/12
    -Modified Brostrom (failed)- 8/15/01"]

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    ankle, atfl, pain

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