Published online Jan 18, 2016. doi: 10.5312/wjo.v7.i1.8
Peer-review started: April 21, 2015
First decision: May 13, 2015
Revised: June 6, 2015
Accepted: September 16, 2015
Article in press: September 18, 2015
Published online: January 18, 2016
Football is the most popular sport worldwide and is associated with a high injury rate, most of which are the result of trauma from player contact. Ankle injuries are among the most commonly diagnosed injuries in the game. The result is reduced physical activity and endurance levels, lost game time, and considerable medical cost. Sports medicine professionals must employ the correct diagnostic tools and effective treatments and rehabilitation protocols to minimize the impact of these injuries on the player. This review examines the diagnosis, treatment, and postoperative rehabilitation for common football injuries of the ankle based on the clinical evidence provided in the current literature.
Core tip: Injury prevention is paramount in optimizing function and decreasing time lost from sport in footballers. Early recognition of foot and ankle injuries allows implementation of conservative measures aimed at improving function and reducing the risk of re-injury or development of concomitant pathologies. Treatment, whether conservative or surgical, requires an understanding of the mechanical component of injury (e.g., ligament tear, osteophytes), while additionally addressing the biological components affecting healing. This includes restoration of normal proprioceptive pathways through physical therapy programs while also treating the catabolic biochemical environment through selected use of biological adjuncts including platelet-rich plasma and bone marrow aspirate concentrate.