Arthroscopic treatment of soft-tissue impingement of the ankle in athletes.
Sixty ankle arthroscopies were performed on patients with chronic soft-tissue impingement of the ankle after an ankle sprain between January 1989 and January 1994. Preoperative examination findings featured tenderness localized to the anterolateral aspect of the ankle, no instability, and, with the exception of 2 patients, normal radiographs. A preoperative bone scan was performed on 34 patients and was positive in each case but was not specific. Arthroscopy was performed an average of 23 months after injury. Results were determined by using a new ankle rating score. Hypertrophic synovium, synovitis, or fibrous adhesions were arthroscopically visualized and resected in all cases. The average follow-up was 27 months (range, 6 to 64 months). Thirty-one patients underwent complete evaluation and 29 were evaluated over the telephone. There were 51 excellent, 7 good, 1 fair, and 1 poor results. The diagnosis of chronic soft-tissue impingement of the ankle can be made from an appropriate history, thorough physical examination, and plain radiographs. Ankle arthroscopy with resection of impinging hypertrophic synovium or fibrous bands occurring after an ankle sprain was effective in alleviating pain in athletes.
DeBerardino, TM; Arciero, RA; Taylor, DC
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