Patient Information Resources

Centre for Orthopaedics
Suite 10-33/34/35 Mount Elizabeth Novena Specialist Centre
38 Irrawaddy Road
Singapore, 329563, Singapore
Ph: (65) 6684 5828
Fax: (65) 6684 5829

Child Orthopedics
Pain Management
Spine - Cervical
Spine - General
Spine - Lumbar
Spine - Thoracic

View Web RX

« Back

Giving Ankle Injury the Third Degree

Posted on: 11/30/1999
Here's a dilemma for sports medicine. Say an athlete sprains an ankle. Can the medical examiner tell the coach how soon the athlete can return to the sport? Right now, ligament sprains are divided into first, second, and third-degree sprains. The first-degree sprain is mildest and usually means a faster recovery. But how quickly can the athlete return to competition? And how does this compare to a second-degree or third-degree sprain?

A group of physical therapists wanted to classify ankle sprains based on prognosis, or expected treatment results. Such a method would help predict what will happen with each degree of ankle sprain. No test is known to predict the time required to return to play, so the therapists decided to see if a patient's report of the injury could help predict how soon the athlete returned to sport. Number of days to return to sport may be one way to classify ankle injury. This could then be used to predict the outcome of other athletes' injuries.

Twenty athletes who had sprained an ankle participated in this study. The athletes gave the therapists information right after the injury about their pain level and ability to walk or use the leg (compared to the uninjured leg). The therapists measured ankle motion and strength. Treatment was provided twice a day beginning the day after the sprain. Treatment continued until the athlete returned to sport.

The ability to walk and use the leg as reported by athletes was the best predictor of number of days to return to sport. There may be other ways to predict return to sport that are more accurate. Further research will help identify these for use by sports health professionals.

Kevin M. Cross, PT, MS, ATC, et al. The Relationship Between Self-Reported and Clinical Measures and the Number of Days to Return to Sport Following Acute Lateral Ankle Sprains. In Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy. January 2002. Vol. 32. No. 1. Pp. 16-23.

« Back

*Disclaimer:*The information contained herein is compiled from a variety of sources. It may not be complete or timely. It does not cover all diseases, physical conditions, ailments or treatments. The information should NOT be used in place of visit with your healthcare provider, nor should you disregard the advice of your health care provider because of any information you read in this topic.

All content provided by eORTHOPOD® is a registered trademark of Mosaic Medical Group, L.L.C.. Content is the sole property of Mosaic Medical Group, LLC and used herein by permission.