Ankle sprains result from a forceful or excessive twisting of the ankle, often due to a fall or other type of injury. The result is an overstretched or torn ligament that normally holds the ankle in proper alignment. Once overstretched, the ligaments become weakened, swollen and painful. Bruising is common.
Treatment includes resting and elevating the ankle, and applying ice to reduce swelling. Compressive bandages are also useful to stabilize and offer comfort. Anti-inflammatory medications are also helpful. More serious or recurrent sprains may result in chipped or fractured bones, and may require surgery to repair and strengthen the damaged ligaments or to repair broken bony structures.