Dr. Theall's Blog

Posts for tag: ankle surgery

By Dr.Sam Adegboyega
April 24, 2014
Category: Ankle Pain

Giants quarterback Eli Manning suffered a high left ankle sprain in the final season in 2013. He successfully went through recovery and rehab but still experienced discomfort. The choice was made to perform Arthroscopic surgery to have the ankle cleaned out.

Arthroscopy is a minimally invasive alternative to standard open surgical techniques and now one of the most commonly performed ankle surgical procedures. Minimally invasive surgeries result in less postoperative swelling than open techniques and reduce pain, risk of complications, and recovery times. Many injuries, particularly those that at one time would have been career ending for athletes, can now be addressed with arthroscopy allowing a quicker return to full function. The ankle joint is a commonly injured joint in sports. Pain, swelling, bruising, and difficulty walking on the affected foot or ankle are the common symptoms that should be evaluated.

A podiatrist will carefully examine your feet and ankles and take a complete medical history. He will order tests, including an X-ray, ultrasound, or MRI, to determine the extent of your problems. Contact Dr.Theall or Dr.Adegboyega at Gentle touch Foot care for an examination today at 973 673-3668.

By Dr. Bruce Theall
June 05, 2012
Category: Ankle Pain

St. Louis Ram’s quarterback Sam Bradford is still nursing an ankle injury he suffered back in October of 2011. Despite his ankle injury, Bradford’s performance in the Ram’s OTAs this summer has shown his improvements. Broken ankles are a very serious injury, and if not treated right, can lead to a greater potential for more injuries in the upcoming season and a shortened NFL career.

With the assistance of Dr. Bruce Theall, patients with ankle injuries will be treated at Gentle Touch Foot Care. Broken ankles are a very serious injury and if not treated right, they can lead to continuous pain and an inability to walk.  They can be caused when the foot rolls under the wrong way or twists too far, causing one or more of the bones to break.

What is the Difference between Sprains and Breaks?

An ankle sprain happens when ligaments are ripped or torn but no bones are broken. However, a sprain can actually be very severe, causing bruising of the foot and making it hard to put weight on the foot.

If a person cannot stand and support their own weight on their ankle, then most likely the ankle may be broken. If you suspect you have a broken ankle, the best thing to do is get an x-ray. This will determine the severity of the break immediately.

How do Breaks Occur?

Since the injury results from the foot rolling under or twisting too far, a broken ankle generally occurs during exercise, physical activity, or sports. Another common cause can be a jump or fall from a great height.

Caring for a Broken Ankle 

Rest, ice, compression, and elevation are important when caring for a broken ankle. It will help to elevate the feet above your head to reduce blood flow to the injured area, as well as applying ice to the ankles to help decrease swelling.

Does a Broken Ankle Require Surgery?

Broken ankles can be more severe than you might realize, so in some cases, surgery actually is required. If surgery is required, it usually means wearing a cast for at least three months followed by rehabilitation.

If you have any questions or think you might have an ankle injury, please feel free to visit our video library or contact our office which is located in East Orange NJ. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot ankle injuries.


Congratulations to the NY Giants on wining the 2011-2012 NFL Super Bowl! Would it have been possible with a healthy Rob Gronkowski, the touchdown machine for the Patriot who suffered a high ankle sprain before the super bowl? Rob set the NFL touchdown record this seasonal year but was limited during the super bowl due to high ankle sprain. What is a high ankle sprain?

A high ankle sprain, also known as a syndesmotic ankle sprain, is a sprain of the syndesmotic ligaments that connect the tibia and fibula on the lower leg. Syndesmotic ankle sprains are known as high because their location on the lower leg is above the ankle. Unlike common ankle sprains when ligaments around the ankle are torn or receive injury through an inward twisting, high ankle sprains are caused when the lower leg and foot twist out. Anyone can get a high ankle sprain if the outward twisting is present although it is most common with athletes.

Athletes with high ankle sprains usually come to a physician, physical therapist, athletic trainer or other specialist complaining of a dull or sharp pain in the outside-front of the lower leg above the ankle. The pain is usually sharper when twisting is applied. In other cases the high ankle sprain is diagnosed only after treatment for the common ankle sprain fails. High ankle sprains may be harder to diagnose than normal ankle sprains because swelling is usually minor or nonexistent. For this reason some may underestimate the severity of the injury. The physical therapist, athletic trainer, or physician will test for high ankle sprain in a number of ways. The most common approach is the squeeze test (squeezing the calf or lower leg, usually with slight turning). CT scans or radiographs are sometimes used for diagnosis or to check for displacement of the tibia and fibula.

Treatment of high ankle sprains depends on severity. An athlete may be out for as little as 2–3 days or as long as 6 months. Minor high ankle sprains can be healed by reducing movement of the lower leg and foot with a brace or cast. Like common ankle sprains using the PRICE technique works well

  • Protection (from further injury)
  • Rest
  • Ice
  • Compression (wrapping, splint or cast)
  • Elevation

When a high ankle sprain is diagnosed the doctor will determine if the injury is stable or unstable. Stable injuries are the less severe high ankle sprains when the placement of the tibia and fibula stays normal. Unstable high ankle sprains occur when two or all three syndesmotic ligaments are torn and the tibia and fibula are free to move around. Unstable injuries require more treatment, and usually surgery. During the surgery one or two screws are inserted in the lower leg for a few months (usually three) or until the ligaments have reformed and are able to hold the bones in the proper position. When surgery is needed, recovery can take 6 months or longer.

Rob Gronkowski suffered an unstable high ankle sprain and had to go for arthroscopic ankle surgery to repair the ankle ligaments. What is ankle arthroscopy?

Ankle arthroscopy is a surgical procedure that uses a fiber-optic viewing camera and small surgical tools to operate in and around the ankle joint through small incisions. Ankle arthroscopy is performed for the surgical evaluation and treatment of a variety of ankle conditions. Arthroscopic surgery can have a quicker recovery time than traditional open surgery.

  • You may need ankle arthroscopy if you have debris in your ankle from torn cartilage or from a bone chip. Also, if there is ligament damage from a severely sprained ankle, a bone surgeon may choose to do an arthroscopy to evaluate the extent of damage and possibly to repair it.
  • For some people, arthroscopy means a speedier recovery, less scarring, and fewer complications than open surgery.

Our office does treat all related Athletic sport injuries including high ankle sprain and we are well trained in surgical management of these injuries when needed including arthroscopic surgeries. If you know anyone with sport related injuries or with ankle arthritis/pain, please refer them to our video library or Gentle Touch Foot Care for evaluation and proper treatment.