What is a Dislocated Ankle?

The ankle connects the lower leg to the foot making the tibia and fibula of the leg come into contact with the talus of the foot, forming the ankle mortise whose shape helps align the ankle joint while the surrounding ligaments help in providing stability.

An ankle dislocation is a condition due to damage and tearing of the connective tissue surrounding the ankle joint followed by displacement of the bones forming the joint.  When the stretching forces applied to the ankle joint capsule during certain movements are beyond what the ankle can withstand, it may tear the connective tissue resulting in displacing the ankle bones out of their normal position.

Causes of a dislocated ankle

An ankle dislocation occurs traumatically due to extreme force displacing the ankle bones. For example, due to a direct impact, motor vehicle accident or severe ankle sprain.  Dislocated ankles are seen a lot in  sports requiring rapid changes of direction such as soccer, basketball, volleyball and football.

Symptoms of ankle dislocation

  • Immediate and severe pain
  • Visible swelling and bruising
  • Inability to put weight on your foot
  • Difficulty when moving your ankle
  • A bone that pokes through your skin