Chronic ankle sprain, also known as chronic ankle instability, occurs due to an inadequate treatment method during the acute ankle sprain phase. It is characterized by feeling “loose” in the ankle and recurrent ankle sprain. Patients often complain that they will twist their ankles every now and then.
There are two causes of chronic ankle sprains – loss of structural integrity and functional instability.
Loss of structural integrity occurs when there is significant injury or tear in the 3 lateral ankle ligaments – the anterior talofibular ligament, posterior talofibular ligament, or the calcaneofibular ligament.
Functional instability occurs when the ankle did not undergo proper rehabilitation. An acute ankle sprain causes proprioception, muscle coordination and postural control to be affected, and these are responsible for maintaining balance.
Signs and symptoms of chronic ankle sprain include:
Chronic ankle sprain treatment involves treating any injured ligaments and a process of ankle rehabilitation.
Treatment options include:
Your podiatrist will guide you through the proper recovery process and it is important to follow the advice carefully.