What is the treatment for an ankle fracture?
Non-surgical treatments is possible for “stable” ankle fractures. Your physician can help decide which fractures are stable and which are unstable, and this often includes a stress x-ray. Stable injuries can be treated with protective walking boot or cast. Icing and using non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAIDs) medication, such as ibuprofen, can reduce pain and swelling. Depending on the severity of injury, your physician may suggest you limit NSAIDs.
Surgical procedures may be necessary to put bone fragments back in their original alignment. Your physician may secure the bones with surgical screws, metal plates, wiring techniques or rods. This ensures bone fragments heal together. The next step in the healing process will require the injury to be splinted, casted or braced for a short time.
How long is recovery from a broken ankle?
Recovery is dependent upon the severity of the fracture. It takes typically at least six weeks for bones to heal. The healing process may take longer if tendons and ligaments are also damaged or if there are any underlying health conditions. X-rays throughout the process may be necessary to gauge the timeframe of recovery. Once the bone(s) are healed, physical therapy may be recommended. It can often take several months or a year to fully recover.