Successful Techniques for Ankle Pain Management

Your ankles move, flex and bear weight as you walk, run, play tennis or wheel your computer chair around. When ankle pain, swelling and numbness prevent you from doing what you love, see a good foot and ankle specialist in Los Angeles.

Your Loyola doctor may recommend ankle replacement surgery if other, more conservative treatments fail to control arthritis pain or help restore movement. Our orthopedic surgeons are fellowship trained in joint replacement.

All sprains should be treated with the RICE principles of rest, ice, compression and elevation. This means stopping activities that could cause pain, using crutches if necessary and taking over-the-counter acetaminophen or ibuprofen for pain relief.

The doctor may also order x-rays to assess the extent of the injury and determine how long it will take to heal. She will also ask about the patient’s activity level, any other medical conditions and lifestyle factors that might have contributed to the injury.

If the sprain is severe, the doctor may recommend physical therapy. In PT, patients will learn advanced strengthening exercises to prevent further injury and help them return to their usual activities sooner.

The feet and ankles bear our weight, absorb shock and provide balance and mobility. They depend on a complex network of muscles, tendons, ligaments and bones for unimpeded function.

When an injury strikes, the body reacts with inflammation and pain. Applying ice immediately after an injury constricts blood vessels, limits blood flow and reduces swelling.

Use a few small cubes in a tea towel or a bag of frozen vegetables (peas work well) and ice the affected area 20 minutes each hour until it feels numb. This treatment can also be done in an ice bath or a cold whirlpool. Be careful not to damage the skin by leaving ice on for too long.

We flex, twist and bear weight on our ankles all day long whether we’re walking to work, playing tennis or wheeling around our computers. That’s why ankle pain is more than just an inconvenience: it can be completely incapacitating.

To help ease the discomfort of a sprained ankle, our Lakeland pain doctor recommends compression therapy. Compression reduces swelling by increasing blood flow, which promotes healing and prevents blood pooling in the injury area. It also improves symptoms of venous diseases like varicose and spider veins. It’s important that compression be graduated, with the strongest pressure starting at the ankle and gradually decreasing up the leg.

The ankles are complex and essential parts of the body that flex, twist, bear weight and support movement. When they ache, swell or become inflexible it’s time to see a specialist to ensure the pain doesn’t continue to worsen.

Inner ankle pain comes from a thin tendon that runs along the inside of your ankle to your arch. It can tear from a sprain or from overuse.

Your doctor will diagnose your ankle pain with a physical exam and may order X-rays or other imaging tests to get a clear view of the bones in your foot and ankle. They’ll also recommend home care treatment options to relieve the pain, like rest, ice and compression.

For many patients, surgery is not the best treatment option. Doctors will recommend trying all conservative treatments before scheduling a surgical procedure. This includes rest, heat/cold therapy, physical therapy and pain-relieving injections.

In addition to repairing and replacing damaged joints, surgeons may also perform procedures that tighten loose ligaments. This can be useful for patients with high-impact injuries like severe ankle sprains.

Surgery is typically performed in a hospital or other location that can monitor your condition for a few hours. This includes a recovery room, where your parents can visit you. A nurse will help you with your medications and provide other support.