ankle (ligamentous problems)

Last reviewed 01/2018

Ankle ligament injuries occur when the patient stumbles and the supporting foot is twisted and usually, inverted, e.g. a woman slipping in high-heeled shoes or a cross-country runner twisting his ankle when putting his foot on rutted ground.

Generally the ligament only partially tears and this is termed a sprained ankle.

If the ligament is completely torn then the joint subluxes and the talus momentarily tilts into inversion and then snaps back into its normal position.


  • if the injury involves muscles and tendons supporting the ankle, rather than the ligaments, then the correct term is strained ankle