Our ankles are made up of several intricate joints and ligaments that allow us to walk, run, jump, and turn. When these are injured by rolling the ankle for example, it can cause severe pain and make it difficult to move. Our body sends blood to the site of injury to help it heal faster. This can cause both swelling and bruising.
Other causes for ankle pain are as follows:
Most ankle injuries typically heal within weeks to months of the original injury. First, conservative treatment is recommended which includes rest, ice, compression, and elevation. NSAIDs, such as ibuprofen or Aleve, and Tylenol are beneficial for reducing inflammation and pain.
If conservative measures are ineffective, an ankle injection is recommended.
An ankle joint injection is quick procedure that is minimally invasive. It is comprised of both a local anesthetic and a steroid medication and can be used for both diagnostic and therapeutic purposes. The anesthetic medication alleviates tissue, joint, and nerve pain rapidly while the steroid medicine reduces inflammation and can provide long lasting relief. The steroid medication can take 2-3 days up to a week to fully work.
Ankle joint injections can be repeated every three months as needed.
For diagnostic purposes, we can use ultrasound guidance to target specific nerves that innervate various parts of the ankle. If two or more diagnostic injections are successful, a subsequent nerve radiofrequency ablation can be performed for long lasting relief.
After the injection, applying ice for 15-20 minutes every 2-3 hours is recommended to reduce injection site swelling and irritation. NSAIDs and/or Tylenol are also recommended.