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Ankle twisting causing painful, slight swelling outside ankle bone. Sprain?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2009
Answered : 9400 Questions
About a week and a half ago, I slipped off the side of my shoe (a slip on style shoe with 2 in heels and no back). It twisted my ankle, but I didn't really feel any pain at the time, and went about my business. For the past 4 days it has been painful, slight swelling, right at the outside ankle bone. What is odd is that it does not hurt at all if I am standing or walking; only when it is relaxed. I've iced, and am keeping it elevated at night. Do you think this is a sprain?
I did want to note that when the foot is relaxed and I bend my toes towards the top of the foot, I feel pain as well. But no pain at all while standing, or walking.
Posted Thu, 13 Jun 2013 in General Health
Answered by Dr. Shoaib Khan 2 hours later
Hello and welcome to Heathcaremagic.

Thank you for writing to us.

I have gone through your query, and the most reassuring aspect of your query is that there is no pain while walking or weight bearing. Which is good news.

The pain that you experience when you bend your foot (toes) towards or away from yourself is a position which puts strain on the muscle tendons or ligaments.Yes, this could be a sprain, during which stress is applied on these parts resulting in pain and mild immobility of the region. This could mean that there is some inflammation or minor injury of these parts. The only treatment advised would be foot rest, avoid weight bearing and if the pain is severe then a pain killer. But this can be avoided as well.

The pain might take 3-7 days to completely subside, it should be fine after that. If the pain does not subside, you could visit an orthopaedician for an examination, but I doubt this would be required.

I hope I have succeeded in providing the information you were looking for. Please feel free to write back to me for any further clarifications. I would gladly help you.

Best wishes.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Ankle twisting causing painful, slight swelling outside ankle bone. Sprain? 4 hours later
Dr. XXXXXXX Do you suggest wrapping the ankle with an "ace" type bandage? And is heat or cold compresses advised? Thank you.
Answered by Dr. Shoaib Khan 24 minutes later
Hello once again.

Thank you for writing back to me.

Yes, an ace bandage would certainly help, as it would provide stabilization of the foot to a certain extent. Although I would still advise you to be careful while walking and standing, and avoid weight bearing. Try to be seated as much as possible.

I would first advise an ice pack, for the first 2-3 days maximum, till the swelling comes down. This can be followed by warm compresses, which you can initiate from the second or third day. The heat will promote circulation and in turn healing. Wishing you lots of luck and a speedy recovery

I hope you found my response helpful and informative. Do write back to me for any further clarifications, or you could rate my answers after closing this discussion.

Best wishes.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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