Ankle pain is a common problem that affects 9-15% of Americans at any given time. Ankle pain usually isn’t serious, but if your symptoms get worse or keep you from activities like work or exercise, don’t wait to seek treatment. At Diablo Podiatry and Bay Vascular, podiatrists Christyn Marshall, DPM, AACFAS and Jenny Lam, DPM, AACFAS and the team use advanced methods of care to diagnose and treat ankle pain. To make an appointment at the practice in San Ramon, California, call the office today or schedule online.

request an appointment

What is ankle pain?

Ankle pain refers to any swelling, irritation, or general discomfort that affects one (or both) of your ankle joints. Usually, it occurs due to general wear-and-tear, arthritis, or exercise, but it can also result from an accident or injury.

Most cases of ankle pain respond well to conservative treatments, like ice, rest, and elevation. If your pain interferes with your daily routine or quality of life, contact the team at Diablo Podiatry and Bay Vascular right away.

What causes ankle pain?

Ankle pain occurs for various reasons, including:

  • Bursitis
  • Fractures
  • Sprains
  • Tendonitis
  • Arthritis
  • Achilles tendon injuries
  • Flatfoot
  • Gout

You might also experience ankle pain due to an infection.

Is there any way to prevent ankle pain?

There’s no way to prevent ankle pain entirely, but there are several things you can do to lower your risk.

The team at Diablo Podiatry and Bay Vascular recommends maintaining a healthy weight, regularly strengthening the muscles in your legs and ankles, and listening to your body. For example, if your ankle hurts while working out, take a break instead of pushing through the discomfort.

When should I call a podiatrist about ankle pain?

Ankle pain is often mild, but contact Diablo Podiatry and Bay Vascular right away if:

  • Your pain is severe and fails to improve
  • Pain and swelling occur suddenly
  • You have a fever
  • You’re unable to stand up or put weight on the ankle

All of these symptoms indicate a more serious issue that requires immediate care.

How is ankle pain diagnosed?

To diagnose ankle pain, your Diablo Podiatry and Bay Vascular provider examines your ankle, looking for signs of swelling, redness, or bruising. Next, they have you move your ankle back and forth and assess your range of motion.

If your provider suspects an underlying issue like a fracture or bone spur is to blame, they order diagnostic imaging tests, like X-rays, an MRI, or a CT scan. These tests provide high-quality images of the hard and soft tissues beneath your skin.

How is ankle pain treated?

When possible, the team at Diablo Podiatry and Bay Vascular uses conservative treatments to relieve ankle pain. For example, they might recommend ice, rest, elevation, and taking over-the-counter pain medicine.

If your pain persists or gets worse, the team might recommend custom orthotics, physical therapy, an ankle brace, or a splint. In rare cases, a surgical procedure might be necessary, but that’s always a last resort.

To explore the various treatment options for ankle pain, make an appointment at Diablo Podiatry and Bay Vascular by calling the office or scheduling online today.