Monday, May 07, 2007

Ankle Anatomy

(Another post about my ankle. I know how much it sucks to read about other people's injuries. Believe me, I'd rather be posting a race report from yesterday's marathon. Unfortunately, that's not how it turned out. But if you want to just skim through all these "injury" posts, I won't be offended. It's probably what I'd do.)

I think what's so annoying about this injury is that it's not an overuse injury. It's not that I was pushing too hard and got hurt. It was totally accidental, and not really a true running injury. I wasn't looking where I was going, and I stepped off the curb funny. It's so frustrating that a stupid little mistake like that has ruined my running (and by extension much more than that) for weeks.

The truth is, I've actually been doing a little more running. The weather's just been too nice. My "ankle" itself feels a lot better, but the bottom of my foot has been bothering me. It's not terrible when I run, but walking a lot is a pain.

After reviewing some of my old textbooks, I've re-learned some of the anatomy in the area.

Sprains happen when the ligaments that stabilize the ankle joint get stretched or torn.

Judging by the degree of bruising and swelling I had, and the fact that I was never too unstable, I'm guessing I had a type II sprain.

Initially, it definitely hurt along the top side of my foot, mostly where the top right ligament in the picture is. (The anterior talofibular ligament.) It's still a little sore there, but now the problem is more on the bottom of my foot. Particularly when I walk a lot, it's sore on the underside of my foot, opposite the arch.

Looking at a more detailed diagram, I think that what's hurting me are my peroneals.

The ligaments from the above diagrams are colored in yellow. The peoneus longus (long) and brevis (short) tendons are colored in red. As you can see they insert on the bottom of the foot, towards the base of the little toe. Which is where it hurts me. Apparently, these muscles get used more heavily when you have an ankle sprain, in order to compensate for the lack of stabilization. I think the muscles/tendons are sore because they're overused or tight, or something like that. It's not tender to touch anywhere, it just hurts when I walk. That's why I think it's muscular and not a fracture.

In any case, I'm quite certain that what I need is physical therapy to work on strengthening or stretching these muscles. I've already had an informal visit to my therapist friend, but I think I need to do this more formally. I'm going to try and schedule an appointment with some sort of sports medicine doctor, and then hopefully settle into a more regular PT schedule.

I'll keep you posted. (Even if you don't want to be!)


Blogger jeanne said...

oh man, this sucks!! I'm so sorry you had to miss your marathon. and so sorry about the way it happened! but the next time i hurt my foot, i'm calling YOU.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007  
Anonymous Paul D said...

That's exactly what I have now - a type 2 sprain in my ankle. Glad to know that it's not a type 3, because I wouldn't be able to move it at all, I'm still a bit frustrated because I can't walk - I just lie in my bed all day and sleep, which will have a huge impact on my physique.

Monday, June 09, 2008  
Blogger David said...

I was looking for ankle information when I came across your page here. I'm about to do a half marathon in a couple weeks, and I messed up the same exact tendon; I can't put any weight on it at all without having a sharp pain in that same area. Do you have any tips for me?

Tuesday, October 14, 2008  
Blogger Nicholas Del Carlo, M.S.M.O.B. said...

The peoneus longus (long) and brevis (short) tendons are colored in red.

I have had pain in the red. Its been months and I can not get rid of it? I am now wearing a boot that has helped tremendously with taking the pain away. I wonder how long I have to wear this boot?

Tuesday, April 07, 2009  
Blogger John C said...

Hi Danny:

My wife has the same problem as you having several pain in the peoneus longus and brevis tendons when the weight is being applied. What phyical theraphy (stretching and strengthening) did you do to get better?

To Nicholas:

What boots did you wear to minimise the pain in the area mentioned above?

Your help is highly appreicated.

John C

Saturday, May 02, 2009  
Blogger Almen said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009  

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