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Broken or Sprained Ankle?

by kristen
(pittsburgh)



I was walking down my driveway when my ankle rolled inwards. There was a loud popping noise and immediate, intense pain. It swelled quickly, but took a day to completely bruise. The ankle bone is bruised and so is the bottom of my foot. My foot keeps going numb on and off and now right above my toes is starting to bruise. I went to the ER and they took an xray..said I chipped a piece of bone? But its just like a sprain and they don't cast it? I dunno...it's been 3 days and is hurting enough to make me cry (im 22 with a kid..i know pain)


ANSWER

Hi Kristen,

A broken bone should be treated like a broken bone particularly if you are having as much pain as you state.
There is also the possibility that you did damage to the ligament on the outside of the ankle as well as to the tendon that passes along the outside of your ankle.
In many cases emergency room doctors do not properly treat foot and ankle problems and they send the patient on to a podiatrist or an orthopedist.
I therefore, would suggest that you make an appointment as soon as possible with either an orthopedist or a podiatrist.
You might want to request the x-rays from the emergency room so that you do not have to pay for additional x-rays.
You need to have your ankle examined by someone who treats ankles on a regular basis. This will ensure that you get proper care.
At the very least, even with a chip fracture, it will be necessary to immobilize the ankle, along with the possibility of crutches, which will allow the fracture to heal and in the short term give you some relief from the pain.
If your doctor finds that your pain is out of proportion to the fracture, he or she may order an mri in an effort to evaluate the soft tissue surrounding the ankle bone, to make sure that you did not do additional damage.

Marc Mitnick DPM
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