An ankle dislocation can occur when a significant amount of force is placed on the joint, resulting in an abnormal flexing that shifts the bones in the ankle from their normal positions. An ankle dislocation is often the result of a sports injury caused by physical contact or by quick pivots to change direction. Prompt medical attention to determine whether the blood supply to the foot has been compromised is essential.
The symptoms of a dislocated ankle typically include intense pain at the joint, which may radiate up the leg, and an inability to place weight on the associated foot. Swelling, tenderness and a sensation of numbness around the ankle are also common.
Treatment of an ankle dislocation generally begins with rest, ice, compression and elevation (RICE) to help reduce inflammation and prevent further damage to the joint. A surgical procedure to reposition the bone and hold it in place with screws and plates may be necessary. The ankle is then put in a cast or boot to stabilize and protect it as it heals.