What is a sprained ankle?
An ankle sprain occurs when the ligaments in the ankle are torn or stretched beyond their normal range of motion. Ligaments are the strong tissues that connect bones to other bones. The ligaments that hold the ankle together keep the joint in its proper position and help stabilize the joint. Some potential causes of an ankle sprain include falling and twisting your ankle, landing awkwardly while running or jumping, or tripping on an uneven surface. Dr. Ronak Mukesh Patel, orthopedic ankle specialist, treats patients in Sugar Land, Pearland, and the Houston, Texas area, who have experienced an ankle injury, rolled ankle, or ankle sprain.
What are the types of sprained ankles?
Upon diagnosing your ankle sprain, Dr. Patel will determine what grade, or the severity, of your ankle sprain, which will determine what kind of medical treatment will be necessary. There are three grades of ankle sprains:
- Grade 1 sprain: This is the mildest sprain, resulting in slight stretching, or microscopic tears in one or more ligaments. Grade 1 sprains may result in some swelling and mild tenderness. Grade 1 sprains take 1 to 2 weeks of recovery.
- Grade 2 sprain: Grade 2 is a moderate sprain. One or more ankle ligament is partially torn, and moderate pain, swelling, and tenderness may occur. This sprain may also cause some bruising, and some loss of range of motion. Grade 2 sprains take 2 to 4 weeks to recover.
- Grade 3 sprain: This is the most severe sprain resulting in a complete ligament tear. Inability to walk, severe pain, bruising, tenderness, and complete loss of ankle range of motion may occur. Grade 3 sprains can take up to 1 to 2 months to heal.
*The timings are estimates and can vary depending on the patient’s age, weight, activity level, associated injured structures, and rehabilitation.