Anatomy of an Ankle Sprain

The most commonly injured structures when we twist our ankle are the ligaments on the outside of the ankle and the peroneal muscles at the side of the lower leg.

There are 3 main ligaments on the outside of the ankle, they all have quite long names so we will just call them ATFL, CFL and PTFL. Usually the ATFL gets injured, sometimes the CFL also gets injured and in the most serious ankles sprains the PTFL also gets damaged. The ligaments help to attach bones of the foot to the fibula part of the ankle joint. They also send information to the brain about how balanced we are. If they get damaged, they can be weakened and so give less stability and could send less signals to the brain causing the ankle to feel less balanced. This means that you could suffer more sprains to the same ankle.

The peroneal muscles are on the side of the ankle and lower leg. These muscles pull the foot outwards and stop it from rolling inwards. When we twist our ankle and the foot is forced inwards this can cause a strain of the Peroneals. If the ankle doesn’t get the correct treatment and you aren’t advised on the correct exercises, this strain can add to the weakness and lack of stability of the ankle.

If you sprain your ankle please give us a ring and book an appointment – it will save you pain, money, time and hassle if you do it early.

Speak to our friendly team on 01438 317037 or message us through our Facebook page.

Kerri Surman – Specialist Sports and Musculoskeletal Physiotherapist