WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW:
Ankle Dislocation (Aftercare Instructions) Care Guide
- Ankle Dislocation Aftercare Instructions
- En Espanol
Ankle dislocation is when the bones in your ankle joint move out of place. A joint is an area where bones meet. You may also have an ankle fracture (break in the bone). An ankle dislocation and fracture may need surgery.
Rest your ankle:
You will need to rest your ankle for 6 weeks after your injury. Avoid putting pressure on your ankle for long periods of time. This will help keep your ankle safe from further damage, and help it heal faster.
Ice your ankle:
Ice helps decrease swelling and pain. Ice may also help prevent tissue damage in your ankle. Put crushed ice in a plastic bag and cover it with a towel. Put the ice pack on your foot for 15 to 20 minutes every hour. Use the ice as directed.
Compress your ankle:
- You may need to wrap an elastic bandage around your ankle. An ankle wrap will compress (put pressure on) your ankle to help decrease swelling. Compression also helps support your ankle, and allows it to heal. Wear your ankle wrap for as long as directed. Ask for instructions about how to wrap your ankle.
- You may also need a brace, short leg cast, or splint to help protect your ankle. A splint is a type of brace that keeps your ankle stable. Ask how to care for your brace, cast, or splint.
Elevate your ankle:
When you sit or lie down, keep your injured ankle above the level of your hips. This helps to decrease swelling. Do this by propping your leg up on pillows.
- Pain medicine: You may be given medicine to decrease or take away pain. Do not wait until the pain is severe before you take your medicine.
- Take your medicine as directed: Call your primary healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell him if you take any vitamins, herbs, or other medicines. Keep a list of the medicines you take. Include the amounts, and when and why you take them. Bring the list or the pill bottles to follow-up visits.
Ask your primary healthcare provider how active you should be, and when you may return to your normal daily activities. Movement and activity are helpful for healing. After 6 weeks, practice walking as directed.
Use crutches as directed:
You may need crutches to help you walk while your ankle heals. Crutches help you keep your weight off your ankle, and help prevent more ankle damage.
You may need physical therapy. A physical therapist shows you exercises to strengthen your ankle and improve your balance. Physical therapy may help your ankle heal, and help you walk safely while and after your ankle heals. These exercises may also help to decrease your pain.
Follow up with your primary healthcare provider or bone specialist within 2 days:
Write down any questions you have so you remember to ask them in your follow-up visits.
Contact your primary healthcare provider or bone specialist if:
- You have trouble walking, or more swelling, pain, or stiffness in your ankle, even after you take your medicine.
- You have questions about your ankle dislocation or treatment.
Return to the emergency department if:
- The skin around your ankle begins to feel hot, tight, or is shiny or pale (loss of color).
- Your cast or splint feels too tight.
- Your ankle, foot, or toes feel numb.
© 2013 Truven Health Analytics Inc. Information is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes. All illustrations and images included in CareNotes® are the copyrighted property of the Blausen Databases or Truven Health Analytics.
The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.
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