Risk Factors for Ankle Sprain

Ankle sprains are one of the most common sports and orthopedic injuries encountered in Physical Therapy.  In previous blog posts we described the effectiveness of Physical Therapy treatments over other treatments including rest, ice, compression, and elevation (R.I.C.E.).  In addition, we have good evidence supporting the use of Physical Therapy clinical testing to determine which sprains are most likely to develop into chronic symptoms.  A recent review article highlighted the modifiable risk factors, which make patients more likely to sustain a first ankle sprain. 

Authors in the journal Sports Health (Kobayashi et al. 2016) reviewed 8 published articles to determine the ability of risk factors to predict a future ankle sprain.  The authors reported patients have a greater risk of ankle injury with increased weight, weakness in the leg and ankle musculature and limited balance ability.   Recreational and professional athletes are advised to work with a local Physical Therapist to identify and treat these impairments to reduce their risk of future injury.