Cases Involving Ankle Fracture Injuries
In malleolar fracture cases, permanent damage is possible. These fractures can also make it difficult to sit, stand, run, or walk. For some victims, the pain lasts for a long time. These fractures can also happen in a variety of ways. Furthermore, there is often no way to avoid the accidents or injuries that lead to the fracture. In many cases, the accidents are caused by another person’s negligence as well.
Victims who suffer from malleolar fracture injuries can also be severely impacted over a long period of time. This also makes earning a living or living free from pain difficult.
Malleolar Fracture Injuries
Malleolar fractures are fractures involving the ankle bones. Ankle fractures can occur in any of the three bones that make up the ankle. This includes the shinbone, the smallest bone in the lower leg, and the small bone that sits between the other two bones and the heel bone as well.
Ankle fractures can be simple or complex. Simple ankle bone fractures involve a small break in just one of the bones in the ankle. Complex ankle bone fractures may involve multiple fractures in a single ankle bone or fractures in multiple ankle bones. Malleolar fractures can also be small hairline fractures, compound fractures, or clean breaks of the bone as well.
Victims with serious injuries to their malleolus may also sustain significant damage to their ligaments. This often results in additional pain, suffering, and a longer recovery time as well. Damage to the ligaments around the ankle bones can also cause problems because these ligaments hold the ankle bones in place. They support the ability to walk as well.
Types of Fractures
Medial Malleolar Fractures
These fractures happen to the medial malleolus. It is located on the inside of the shin bone where it connects to the other bones in the ankle.
Lateral Malleolar Fractures
These fractures occur to the lateral malleolus, on the end of the fibula where it connects at the ankle to the other bones.
Posterior Malleolar Fractures
These fractures occur at the rear of the malleolus, near where the ankle connects to the other bones.
What Causes Malleolar Fracture Injuries?
Malleolar fracture injuries can happen many ways. Some of the most common causes include twisting or rotating the ankle, rolling the ankle, tripping and falling, slipping and falling, and being crushed or otherwise impacted in a car accident.
Some other common accidents that lead to a malleolar fracture injury also include:
- Falling down stairs
- Tripping or severe impact while playing sports
- Being knocked over in a dog attack
- Slipping on the floor due to water or ice
- Being struck by a car while walking or riding a bicycle
Symptoms of a Malleolar Fracture
Some of the common symptoms of a malleolar fracture include:
- Severe pain
- The inability to walk
- Swelling around the site of the injury
- Bruising at the heel, bottom of the foot, or ankle
- Visible deformities at the ankle or the top of the foot.
Victims with these symptoms should also see a doctor for diagnosis and treatment right away in order to avoid prolonged suffering and permanent damage.
Diagnosing a Malleolar Fracture Injury
Doctors will usually diagnose malleolar fracture injuries with an x-ray. X-rays, along with your medical history, help the doctor determine the cause of any pain. This pain may be the result of torn ligaments, a twisted ankle, pulled muscles, or fractures in the bones at the ankle as well.
Treatment for and Recovery
Treatment for malleolar fracture injuries depends on the damage and the extent of any fractures. The treatment typically includes setting the ankle as well as placing it in the cast. However, casts are reserved for fractures that are non-displaced, or limited in severity.
Casting typically lasts four to six weeks depending on the severity of the fracture. However, victims who receive a cast can also see recovery times of up to eight weeks. Furthermore, this recovery involves keeping the ankle elevated, keeping the weight off the ankle, and taking pain and anti-inflammatory medications.
Serious breaks often require surgery and a longer recovery time also. Some of the most common reasons doctors perform surgery to treat malleolar fractures include:
- Unstable fractures that could lead to permanent or more serious injuries
- Subluxation of the talar
- Incongruity of the joints in the ankle
- Fractures that cause the victim’s step to be off by more than two millimeters
- Serious disruptions of the ankle joint, ankle bones, and the surrounding ligaments.
In some cases, screws or pins are placed into the ankle joint or ankle bones to stabilize the fracture. Ankle surgery patients also usually have to wear a cast or boot, and keep the weight off of their ankle to allow for healing.
Long and Short-term Effects of a Malleolar Fracture
Malleolar fractures can inhibit the enjoyment of life over the short term. These fractures can remove the victim’s ability to engage in activities that they once found enjoyable, like running, hiking, or playing sports.
A victim’s work and income may also be prevented if they rely on their ability to walk or do other types of manual labor. Additionally, pain and suffering can stick with victims over time.
Furthermore, any arthritis that accompanies a break in any part of the malleolus can reduce a victim’s ability to enjoy life or to perform major job functions. Complications that come with malleolar fracture injuries can also impair quality of life or the ability to work and earn a living. These fractures can also affect the overall mental and emotional status of the victim.
At Premier Law Group, we can help you recover from the emotional and financial effects of your malleolar fracture. Call 206.285.1743 today to speak directly with one of our Seattle malleolar fracture attorneys.
Other Complications of Malleolar Fracture Injuries
Malleolar fracture injuries don’t just keep the victim from walking, working, or engaging in daily activities. There are often serious issues that can come from these injuries as well. These complications include:
- Osteoarthritis from the stress and pain of the break over time.
- Compartment syndrome from pressure built up around the injury.
- Burning pains caused by nerve damage.
- Infection caused by bacteria entering the wound.
- Disruption of the growth plate inhibiting the development of the body.
- Inability of the wound to heal over time.
- Deep vein thrombosis, or blood clots.
- Reduced range of movement.
These complications can significantly lengthen recovery time for victims and add to the pain and suffering felt by victims.
How to Prevent Malleolar Fracture Injuries
Prevention of malleolar fracture injuries is difficult for victims because it can be difficult to predict when an accident might happen. However, there are ways that you can protect yourself to help decrease your chances of an accident happening. Some of the best ways to protect yourself include:
- Paying attention to where you are walking, to avoid spills, broken flooring, debris, electrical wires and more.
- Paying attention to the road and the other drivers around you while driving and wearing seatbelts as required by law.
- When you are walking or riding a bicycle down the road, always double check before crossing the road. It is important to watch the traffic around you to ensure that you are not struck broadside by a driver.
- Always use safety equipment while playing sports.
- If you think you have suffered this type of injury, seek medical attention right away. Also, do not wait for treatment. Waiting could result in more significant or permanent injuries, which may not be repaired through casting, or even multiple surgeries.
Contact us: Seattle Malleolar Fracture Attorneys Protecting Your Legal Rights
If you are suffering from a malleolar fracture injury due to the negligent actions of another person, you will likely need financial and other assistance. The Seattle fracture attorneys at Premier Law Group help you through your recovery. We will fight to get you the assistance you need to get the best medical care possible.