Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up

Ankle Sprain

Font Size

When to Call a Doctor

See your doctor immediately if you notice any of the following:

  • Your foot or leg bends at an abnormal angle.
  • You feel severe pain.
  • Your foot is cool or pale or changes color.
  • You feel numbness or tingling in your foot or toes that lasts after the initial injury.
  • You can't move your ankle.

You should see your doctor after an ankle sprain if you notice any of the following:

Recommended Related to Fitness & Exercise

Wrist Sprain

A wrist sprain is a common injury for all sorts of athletes. All it takes is a momentary loss of balance. As you slip, you automatically stick your hand out to break your fall. But once your hand hits the ground, the force of impact bends it back toward your forearm. This can stretch the ligaments that connect the wrist and hand bones a little too far. The result is tiny tears or -- even worse -- a complete break to the ligament. While falls cause of a lot of wrist sprains, you can also...

Read the Wrist Sprain article > >

  • You heard a popping sound at the time you sprained your ankle.
  • You have moderate pain or severe swelling or bruising around your ankle.
  • You can't walk or put weight on your affected foot, or your ankle feels unstable.
  • You have redness, swelling, or pain in your leg or groin. These can be signs of a blood clot.
  • You have no improvement in your ankle after 1 week.
  • Your swelling and bruising last more than 2 weeks.

Also be sure to contact your doctor if you have a cast or splint around your ankle that feels too tight. If the cast hurts, pinches, or feels like it is digging into your skin, it may be too tight. If your foot feels numb or your skin feels cool, call your doctor immediately.

If your pain is mild and you are able to put some weight on your foot, you may follow the recommendations in the Treatment Overview and Home Treatment sections of this topic. Initial treatment and rehabilitation exercises ensure that your ankle heals properly. If treatment recommendations are not followed, your ankle may stay weak and unstable.

Who to see

For evaluation, diagnosis, or treatment of an ankle sprain, you may see:

For further treatment, you may be referred to:

1

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: November 15, 2011
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
Next Article:

Hot Topics

WebMD Video: Now Playing

Click here to wach video: Dirty Truth About Hand Washing

Which sex is the worst about washing up? Why is it so important? We’ve got the dirty truth on how and when to wash your hands.

Click here to watch video: Dirty Truth About Hand Washing

Popular Slideshows & Tools on WebMD

hands on abdomen
Can you catch one?
Woman sitting in front of UV lights
Is yours working?
woman using breath spray
What's causing yours?
womans hand on abdomen
Are you ready for baby?
MS Overview
Recognizing symptoms.
bowl of yogurt with heart shape
Eat for a healthy heart.
woman doing pushups
To help you get fit.
Colored x-ray of tooth decay
Know what to look for.
Woman sitting with child
Do you know the symptoms?
mosquito
Stings, bites, burns, and more.
Allentown, PA
Are you living in one?
Thyroid exam
See how much you know.

Women's Health Newsletter

Find out what women really need.