What is the best treatment for an ankle sprain?

The best sprained ankle treatment follows the RICE procedure—rest, ice, compress, and elevate—and then rehabilitate the ankle. You need to take a break from all hard-impact activities and hobbies that may strain the joint, particularly sports and many outdoor activities. Icing the ankle will help reduce the painful inflammation in the soft tissues, allowing them to begin healing. Compressing the ankle in an elastic medical bandage discourages swelling. Keeping the foot elevated also decreases swelling, as well as forces you to rest for a little while. After a couple of days of RICE, you begin rehabilitation. This allows the ankle to recondition itself for your activities.

In severe cases, treatment may involve time in a brace or cast to stabilize the joint and protect it as it heals. Immobilizing the joint for a few weeks allows the loose and damaged ligaments to recover without pressure that could accidentally reinjure them. Occasionally, severely-sprained ankles actually need surgery to repair torn tendons. Getting your sprain accurately diagnosed is the key to getting the right treatment. Let Parker Foot & Ankle help. Call our Houston office at (281) 497-2850 to make an appointment.

Robert G. Parker
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Dr. Parker is a podiatrist and surgeon in Houston, TX who has been helping patients for more than 40 years.