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Ankle Pain Specialist

Blake Fenkell, D.O. -  - Orthopedic Surgeon

Blake Fenkell, D.O.

Orthopedic Surgeon & Arthroscopy & Sports Medicine located in Troy, MI

Ankle pain often stems from injuries like sprains, fractures, and ruptured tendons. At Blake Fenkell, the private practice of orthopedic and sports medicine specialist Blake Fenkell, DO, you can count on compassionate care that strives to get you back on your feet quickly. Dr. Fenkell always takes the noninvasive approach if possible, so you’re in trusted hands in his Troy, Michigan, office. Book your appointment online, or call the office to schedule today.

Ankle Pain Q&A

What causes ankle pain?

Ankle pain usually starts with an injury, with some of the most common causes including:

Ankle sprains

Ankle sprains are the most common type of ankle injury. An ankle sprain occurs when a ligament — the connective tissue that holds your ankle bones together — is overstretched or torn.

An inversion sprain, in which your foot rolls inward to sprain the ligaments in your outer ankle, 

is the most common kind of ankle sprain. Less-common ankle sprains include eversion sprains, which affect the inner ankle ligaments, and high ankle sprains.

The pain of ankle sprains can range in severity depending on how much ligament damage occurs. A severe ankle sprain can hurt as badly as a fracture, and maybe worse.

Achilles tendon injuries

The Achilles tendon, which connects your calf muscle and your heel, is a strong length of connective tissue. However, repetitive stress can cause tiny tears and inflammation (Achilles tendonitis) or even a complete tear (Achilles tendon rupture) in the tissue. 

Achilles tendon injuries can lead to severe ankle pain and often other issues, such as difficulty bearing weight on your ankle or walking. 

Ankle fractures

Ankle fractures are broken bones anywhere in the ankle joint. The main cause of this type of fracture is direct or indirect trauma involving your ankle joint, with sports injuries as a common culprit.

The most common area of ankle fracture occurs in the fibula (the smaller of your two lower leg bones) in your outer ankle. Fractures can also occur in the tibia (the shinbone) and the talus (the bone between your heel, tibia, and fibula). 

It’s fairly common to have more than one ankle fracture at a time, especially with traumatic injuries. The more fractures you have, the more severe the damage, pain, and ankle instability. 

Ankle pain is often related to a sports injury or accident, but it can also start because of joint disease (arthritis), joint inflammation (bursitis), nerve compression (tarsal tunnel syndrome), or other reasons.

How is ankle pain diagnosed?

At Blake Fenkell, an ankle pain diagnosis includes a careful exam and questions about your symptoms. It's quite common for ankle pain to be just one part of the issue, so Dr. Fenkell also checks for swelling, joint changes, bruising, and instability.

Dr. Fenkell may request imaging tests — such as X-rays, computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), or a bone scan — to check the structures in your ankle in detail. 

How is ankle pain treated?

Dr. Fenkell always recommends more conservative nonsurgical approaches to ankle pain relief where possible. Some of the most effective treatments can include physical therapy, splinting, oral medication, and injections of corticosteroids, anesthetics, or platelet-rich plasma (PRP). 

Should you need ankle surgery, Dr. Fenkell uses the most up-to-date approaches, ranging from ankle arthroscopy to open surgery with internal fixation hardware, to achieve excellent results. Dr. Fenkell prescribes a very detailed recovery regimen after surgery to help you get back on your feet safely.

For help with ankle pain, call Blake Fenkell, or click on the online scheduling link now.