Every day, we place a lot of pressure on our ankles. This joint connects the leg to the foot, thus enabling structure, support, movement and mobility. Therefore, ankle injuries, usually sprains and fractures, occur pretty regularly. Both conditions share such symptoms as pain and muscle hemorrhages. However, fractures may be identified by either abnormal or a lack of movement; a cracking sound may also be heard.
Some ankle fractures may require little medical attention, other than applying a tightly wrapped bandage, staying off the damaged foot, and letting the healing process begin. But other foot fracture treatment programs may be necessary for more complex and painful injuries. These fractures may also mask problems related to systemic disorders and abnormalities in lower extremity joints.
Orthopaedic Expert in Ankle Fractures
In these cases, patients may require a differential diagnosis performed by experienced orthopaedic surgeons. In particular, the Florida Hospital Orthopaedic Institute Fracture Care Center (FCC), a leading destination for ankle fracture treatment, and all musculoskeletal conditions, in general.
J. Dean Cole, MD, an orthopedic specialist and the FCC’s Medical Director, and his colleagues specialize in ankle fractures and related foot fracture treatment and care. Here, ankle fractures are quickly diagnosed and treated minimally invasively by our surgeons and the Fracture Care Center team. The FCC also treats other ankle- and foot-related injuries and conditions, including:
- Foot fractures or dislocations
- Arthritis in the foot or ankle
- Diabetes-related deformities
- Foot deformities, including flat feet
When it comes to ankle fractures, immediate medical attention is recommended. Even simple, painless set-backs can worsen, leading to serious health issues. Once you schedule a clinical examination at the Center, your situation will be promptly evaluated. We have provided a more in-depth discussion of the FCC’s Treatments for ankle fractures, along with an actual patient’s Case Study.
Are you interested in scheduling an ankle fracture or dislocation treatment with a Fracture Care Center orthopedic specialist? Please contact us.
If you or someone you love has suffered an ankle fracture, you’re not alone. Across all age groups, these injuries are very common. As such, the qualified orthopaedic experts at the Florida Hospital Orthopaedic Institute Fracture Care Center (FCC) can quickly diagnose and treat ankle fracture injuries and other foot-related conditions.
The FCC has become a destination to treat and relieve ankle fractures. Every year, the FCC treats more than 200 patients with ankle fractures and other conditions, providing our team with a unique breadth of experience treating these complex fractures. J. Dean Cole, MD, the Center’s Medical Director, and a renowned orthopedic specialist and traumatologist, leads a team of musculoskeletal professionals uniquely skilled in providing a variety of treatment options, both surgical and otherwise.
These specific procedures are among the most commonly performed. However, Dr. Cole has developed and perfected an enviable collection of techniques and approaches designed to create better outcomes for patients.
Treat Ankle Fracture Concerns, Minimally Invasively
It is our physicians’ preference for minimally invasive surgery (MIS) that makes the Center truly stand apart. Here, patients undergoing ankle-related procedures can expect certain benefits. As the skin surrounding the surgical site is less damaged, healing improves, and infection risks are reduced. In addition, surgery can be performed almost immediately after diagnosis; there’s no need to wait for injury blisters to heal.
Using the MIS approach, our surgeons are able to maneuver the pin size incision holes for surgery around any blisters or swelling. This typically provides our patients with a shorter recovery time and quicker return to activity. Our physicians have found that using the MIS approach reduces the risk of re-injury and provides for better long-term mobility.
Traditionally the procedure used to treat foot fracture conditions requires a large open incision. This approach endangers healthy soft tissue and muscle, putting the patient at increased risk for infection and post-surgical complications. In addition, it increases the likelihood of damaging crucial nerves.
The other downside of the traditional open approach is that surgery can typically be delayed to allow for blisters and swelling to decrease enough for surgery to occur. This delay can increase the patient’s time off from work. Even worse, it may result in the fracture beginning to heal incorrectly, providing for a more complex surgery and recovery process.
At the Fracture Care Center, the orthopedic specialist team regularly perform surgery involving the ankle joint’s two bones, the tibia and the fibula syndesmosis. The tibia has a very high risk for soft tissue damage, and its related slower bone healing. However, the Center’s treatment may provide stable fixation, with far less damage to soft tissues.
Much of the Center’s success in surgical outcomes for ankle fractures is due to the utilization of Dr. Cole’s ground-breaking invention, the “fibula intramedullary nail.” With this procedure, Dr. Cole and his surgical colleagues utilize a specially designed cable mechanism. This imparts a stable, secure method to repair the separation of the two bones in the ankle joint with minimal invasion. Typical orthopaedic procedures for ankle fractures may also require additional surgery to remove any hardware, such as fixed screws. However, Dr. Cole’s cable mechanism eliminates the need for additional procedures.
Of course, patients may have more severe fractures, or they may develop arthritis-related pain and deformities. In such cases, the ankle may not be able to be repaired, requiring an ankle fusion (“tibiotalar arthrodesis”) procedure. This involves modifying the positions of both the ankle and foot, in order to improve the foot’s mechanics. Generally, 30-40% of the up-and-down movements of the foot’s joints are restored, even as side-to-side movement is left unaffected.
Employing his own unique, successful approach, Dr. Cole along with his colleagues, can ensure successful surgical outcomes for ankle fusion surgery. Once the procedure’s completed, and assuming no other orthopaedic problems are present, patients can walk with a minimal limp when using shoes. The Center’s surgeons may also perform additional bone grafts, which may improve the delayed healing common with ankle fusions. And the fears associated with ankle fusions -- such as having stiff feet or uneven limbs -- are generally unwarranted.
The Fracture Care Center Team is available to treat dislocation fracture concerns or any type of foot-related injury or condition. For prompt diagnosis and treatment, contact us.