Ankle fractures are common and vary in their severity (Basques et al., 2015);
The human ankle plays a fundamental role in gait and other daily activities (Leardini, O’Connor and Giannini, 2013). The ankle is formed by the tibiotalar and subtalar or talocalcaneal joints, enabling multiplane movements and to react adequately to (uneven) surfaces or reaction to physical demands.
Ankle fractures can result from rolling or twisting injuries; the most common ankle injury is when the talus (base of the ankle) is rotated fracturing one or both malleoli (outer parts of lower leg bones).
Excellent results can be gained from conservative treatment in the majority of ankle fractures. Undisplaced single bone fractures can be managed by immobilising in a Plaster cast for 4-6 weeks; Internal fixation may be used in the presence of severe ankle fractures with multiple bones involved.
Treatment including joint mobilisation, strengthening, and balance exercises after the period of immobilisation is important to restore range of motion and prevent future injury.
Basques B.A. et al., 2015, Morbidity and Readmission after Open Reduction and Internal Fixation of Ankle Fractures are Associated with Preoperative Patient Characteristics, 473(3), pp: 1133-1139
Leardini A., O’Connor J.J. and Giannini S., 2014, Biomechanics of the natural, arthritic and replaced human ankle joint, Journal of Foot and Ankle Research, 7(8), DOI: 10.1186/1757-1146-7-8