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Fell on steps and was in pain. Had limping, swollen and bruised. X-ray of ankle was normal. Suggest?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2005
Answered : 2580 Questions
In XXXXXXX I fell on some steps and my XXXXXXX went underneath the stairs. I was in terrible pain and my XXXXXXX was throbbing, but I went to bed and figured it would feel better in the morning. In the morning I was limping and my XXXXXXX was swollen and bruised. I saw a doctor that day, and because I was so tender and flinched to the touch, I was sent to get x-rays. The x-rays, for some reason, were of my ankle, which did not hurt. Anyways they found nothing and advised me to take it easy. Fast forward to now where it is very slightly tender, but to the touch it is strangely hard, like I am touching bone. The bruise is still there along with slight swelling. It is unlike anything I have ever had, and makes me nervous. What is it/ should I have it checked out further?
Posted Sat, 21 Sep 2013 in Parenting
Answered by Dr. Prasad 32 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Most likely a benign condition...

Detailed Answer:

Unlike the joints where there are lot of complex structure, the anterior part of the XXXXXXX contains only bone and soft tissue. Injuries to this region either results in soft tissue injury or a fracture. Ankle X-ray usually covers the lower 1/3rd of leg - so the X-ray would have picked up serious fracture if the injury was below the lower 1/3rd of the leg.

All minor fractures and soft tissue injuries heal within 3 months. Since it is not very tender and you are able to walk without difficulty, I do not feel you are harbouring a serious concern. The small hard area may be due to calcification - a process of healing. Avoid massaging this area. I wouldn't be very concerned with these features especially if daily activities are not hurting.

So do not be very worried. The hardened area seems like benign calcification to me. You can choose to consult an orthopedic at your convenience if this area is still troubling you. A close physical examination and localised X-ray of the affected area can put all your fears to rest.

Hope this helps. Let me know if you need clarification.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Fell on steps and was in pain. Had limping, swollen and bruised. X-ray of ankle was normal. Suggest? 7 minutes later
How long should I wait before I have it checked out by a specialist? Is there anything I can do to eliminate the bruise/pain? How long is this expected to last. Thanks
Answered by Dr. Prasad 19 minutes later
Brief Answer:
You can wait for few more weeks...

Detailed Answer:

If you are able to walk without pain and limp, you can wait for a few more weeks. Most injuries like I said, can take up to 3 weeks to recover. So if this is not hurting you and you are able to walk without difficulties you can wait for a few more weeks to a month before choosing to visit a specialist.

In my opinion, all seems to be ok... There is no need to be really concerned.

Hope this helped. Write back for clarifications.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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