The ankle has three ligaments that support the outer ankle. These ligaments are most susceptible to trauma. This is due to the fact that the outer ligaments are weaker than the inside ligaments of the ankle, and most injuries occur with the outside of the ankle being strained when the foot twists in. People most prone to these injuries are those with a history of ankle sprains, high arches, and wearing high-heeled or platform shoes. It is very easy to sprain or tear the front outside ligament called the anterior talofibular ligament.
This injury caused swelling, pain, and possible bruising. Tearing the send ligament on the middle outside of the ankle (calcaneofibular ligament) can cause intense pain bruising and swelling. Although it is difficult to tear the middle and posterior talofibular ligament (back outside ankle ligament) it can happen and be very debilitating. It is necessary to see your podiatrist so they can determine the level of the injury and treatment. Athletes with serious tears may require surgery, with more sedentary older patients requiring bracing. Treatments may include casting, surgery, orthodics, or bracing, depending on the injury.
Many people have the misconception that a bone is not broken if you can move it. This is not always true. If the tendon associated with the bone was not damaged or torn from the bone, a tendon can move the broken bone and most likely with pain. There are different degrees of fractures. There are hairline fractures that may only be diagnosed by swelling, there are non-displaced fractures that may be treated with casting, and there are displaced fractures that may require open or closed reduction.
Lacerations (cuts, tears of skin) are important to have examined. Depending on if the wound is considered clean or dirty will determine if the cut can be sewn or will need to be left open. It is also important to determine if antibiotics and a tetanus shot will be required. Some people decide to wait to see if the wound stops bleeding, or if it gets better before seeking attention. This is not a good practice. Wounds are optimal for closing 6-8 hours after the injury. Any time after this the wound is considered dirty and may not be sutured. It is a good idea to have your physician look at the wound.