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What is Laterial Ankle Instability?

Do your ankles ever seem to "give way" while you are walking or participating in other physical activities? If so, you may have a condition known as lateral ankle instability, or ankle ligament laxity. Thankfully, Lorry A. Melnick, DPM, a professional podiatrist at Laterial Ankle InstabilityCherry Creek Foot Clinic in Denver, CO, can help.

What are the Symptoms of Lateral Ankle Instability?

Common symptoms of lateral ankle instability include a repeated turning of the ankle, chronic pain or discomfort, swelling, and a feeling of being unstable. Your ankles may feel weak or wobbly, and they probably give way without warning. Symptoms may be increased when participating in physical activities or wearing certain types of footwear, but they can happen at any time.

What Causes Lateral Ankle Instability?

The most common cause of lateral ankle instability is repeated ankle sprains that have not healed correctly. When you sprain your ankle, the ligaments in your ankle may become stretched, torn or weakened. Without proper care and treatment, your ligaments can stay weak, which results in the turning or folding over of the ankle. Some people may also simply be at a great risk for lateral ankle instability due to poor genes.

What Treatments are Available for Lateral Ankle Instability?

Depending on the degree of pain and swelling and the frequency with which your ankle gives way, Dr. Melnick may suggest one or more of a few different options. Pain medication can be used to quickly reduce or eliminate pain and swelling, and an ankle brace can help stabilize the ankle to prevent further turning.

Your Denver, CO podiatrist will also likely recommend physical therapy to help strengthen your ligaments, and you may need to avoid certain activities or types of footwear for a while. If your condition is severe enough, surgery may be recommended, but it is generally saved as a last option.

Lateral ankle instability isn't just inconvenient and painful; it can also put you at risk for more serious injuries if you fall at the wrong place or time. Avoid more serious injuries by calling Dr. Melnick at Cherry Creek Foot Clinic in Denver, CO today. A visit to a professional podiatrist will have your feet feeling and performing better as soon as possible.

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