Nov 03

How Long is the Recovery for an Ankle Fracture?

A fractured ankle is a common injury that is often caused by a fall, sporting accident or accidentally twisting your ankle. This ankle injury can either be just a simple break in one of the bones or result to several fractures. The first case does not necessarily have to require you to stop walking. But, the second case may require you not to put weight on the injured ankle for three months, if not longer.

If you have recently hurt your ankle and think that there might be a fracture, it is important to get x-rays immediately to know the extent of the injury.

Fractured ankles can also be treated in two ways, either with a surgery or simply the use of cast. The recovery time often depends on how serious the fracture is and the type of treatment used. But generally, the ankle fracture recovery time can take from 6 to 12 weeks.
Expected Duration Based on the Treatment Used

Fractures that can be treated without the use of surgery may only require you to use a cast for 6 to 8 weeks. However, this does not guarantee that you may have already regained your full movement within this period. As soon as the cast is removed, the patient will require the help of a physical therapy for you to eventually resume with your normal activities. As said, total ankle fracture recovery time depends on the injury’s severity and your lifestyle’s physical demand. If surgery is used to treat the fracture, the ankle fracture recovery time is expected to be longer.
What You May be Prescribed to do During the Recovery Period

The prescribed time you need to wear the cast depends on the fracture type that you sustain. As swelling reduces, your splint or cast may be changed for more than once. Putting weight on the injured ankle must be prevented for a while. In some instances, wearing of a special walking boost may also be recommended as the injury heals.

Pain and swelling are expected to be experienced during the recovery period. To reduce its occurrence, you will need to rest your foot at an elevated surface for at least four times a day. Applying an ice pack at least 20 minutes per hour 2 days following an ankle fracture is recommended. After this period, you can reduce the use of ice packs to 10-20 minutes for three times a day or as needed.

Pain can be relieved during the ankle fracture recovery time by taking Ibuprofen or Naproxen, which you can purchase even without your doctor’s prescription. However, it is not advised to take any of these medication 24 hours after you sustained the injury because it may lead to increased risk of bleeding. For your safety, it would help if you will consult with your doctor first before taking any of the medicines. This is especially recommended if you are suffering from a heart disease, kidney disease, high blood pressure or a history of internal bleeding or stomach ulcers.
Ankle Fracture Recovery Time – When it is Fine to Place Weight on Your Affected Ankle

That time can be determined by your doctor only, and when that period comes, your healthcare provider will immediately inform you about. It typically happens after 6-10 weeks from the time when the injury was sustained. For guaranteed recovery, your doctor will likely advise you to make some changes on your work especially if requires a lot of walking, climbing stairs or standing.

Also, when you are allowed to finally put weight on your affected ankle, you will be recommended to switch using a weight-bearing cast. This type of cast will help you to resume walking again. After 6-10 weeks, your doctor may already inform that you can return to doing your regular activities once it is insured that your injury is fully healed.
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