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Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 50 years

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How can swelling in the ankle post injury be identified as a sprain or a fracture?

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Dr. Bonnie Berger-Durnbaugh

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :1991

Answered : 3131 Questions

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Posted on Wed, 22 Aug 2018 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Question: Yesterday I fell and really hurt my ankle.Now it's swollen and very painful o walk.

How do we tell the difference between a fracture and a sprain
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Answered by Dr. Bonnie Berger-Durnbaugh 56 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Need an X-ray.

Detailed Answer:

Hello,

I have reviewed your query and here is my advice.

If there is significant swelling and pain, I recommend you go in to be seen at urgent care or ER where a doctor can examine it and get an x-ray. It is often impossible to know whether there is a fracture without an X-ray.

It is important to know the status (fracture vs sprain) because the expected course of treatment and recovery can be different.

I'm sorry your are having so much pain. But do go in now and have it looked at and X-ray.

Take care.

Dr. Bonnie Berger-Durnbaugh, General & Family Physician
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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