Sprained ankles are a common injury to athletes and non-athletes alike. The structure most commonly affected after an inversion sprain is the lateral ankle ligament, known as the talofibular ligament. Depending on the severity of the ankle sprain, injury to this ligament can vary from small microtrauma to a complete rupture of the ligament. The talofibular ligament is extremely strong; so strong, in fact, it is rare that it will completely tear. In most cases the ligament will actually pull the fibula forward on the tibia. This is called a positional fault and is responsible for the majority of pain, swelling, and limited range of motion patients experience following an ankle sprain.
Through advances in physical therapy there is now a method involving taping that can help patients with ankle pain. The principal behind this method is based on Mulligan’s mobilization with movement. The patient requires progressive taping to the fibula over a 2 week period of time (sometimes longer based on the severity of the sprain) which returns the fibula to it’s original position. By stabilizing the fibula, swelling and pain reduces quickly and strength and range of motion increases immediately. This taping method can return a patient to sport faster than the usual 6 to 8 weeks associated with conventional physical therapy.
For more information, call Premier Physical Therapy to schedule an appointment.