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How is an ankle sprain treated?

ANSWER

Most ankle sprains will clear up on their own.

You may take anti-inflammatory drugs such as aspirin, ibuprofen, or naproxen. Also, use the "RICE" method:

  • Rest
  • Ice
  • Compression (with an elastic bandage)
  • Elevation (ankle above the heart)

You may need physical therapy for a moderate sprain. Surgery is only for severe cases if other treatments fail.

SOURCES:

American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons: “Sprained Ankle,” “Ankle sprains: what’s normal, what’s not.”

American Podiatric Medical Association: “Sprains, Strains & Fractures”

Mayo Clinic: “Sprained Ankle.”

American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society: “Ankle Sprain”

Southeast Orthopedic Specialists: “The Difference Between a Broken and Sprained Ankle.”

Emory Healthcare: “Is it a Sprain? Or a Fracture?”

Reviewed by Tyler Wheeler on March 14, 2019

SOURCES:

American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons: “Sprained Ankle,” “Ankle sprains: what’s normal, what’s not.”

American Podiatric Medical Association: “Sprains, Strains & Fractures”

Mayo Clinic: “Sprained Ankle.”

American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society: “Ankle Sprain”

Southeast Orthopedic Specialists: “The Difference Between a Broken and Sprained Ankle.”

Emory Healthcare: “Is it a Sprain? Or a Fracture?”

Reviewed by Tyler Wheeler on March 14, 2019

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