If you're considering foot or ankle surgery, your foot and ankle orthopaedic surgeon may have said you'll need to be non-weightbearing for a period of weeks after your procedure. What does that mean?
The term non-weightbearing, sometimes prescribed simply as N.W.B., refers to restrictions placed on you immediately after surgery. You will be advised to avoid putting the surgically repaired foot on the floor. This typically means no weight whatsoever, not even for a second or two whether standing or seated.
Ankle sprains are very common injuries -- some 25,000 people do it every day. Sometimes, it is an awkward moment when you lose your balance, but the pain quickly fades away and you go on your way. But the sprain could be more severe; your ankle might swell and it might hurt too much to stand on it. If it's a severe sprain, you might have felt a "pop" when the injury happened.
To understand if an ankle is fractured (broken), it helps not only to know the symptoms but also to understand how the bones, muscles, and other soft tissues work together. Click the button below to learn more about the anatomy of the ankle as well as signs that indicate it may be broken.
Use this three-part guide to help make your orthopaedic foot or ankle surgery and recovery go smoothly. You achieve the best results when you work with your surgeon to prepare for surgery and post-surgical recovery. Part 1 will focus on what to do before your surgery.
Use this three-part guide to help make your orthopaedic foot or ankle surgery and recovery go smoothly. You achieve the best results when you work with your surgeon to prepare for surgery and post-surgical recovery. Part 2 will focus on what to do the day of your surgery.
How to Prepare for Foot or Ankle Surgery: Part III
Use this three-part guide to help make your orthopaedic foot or ankle surgery and recovery go smoothly. You achieve the best results when you work with your surgeon to prepare for surgery and post-surgical recovery. Part 3 will focus on what to do in the days immediately after your surgery.
Following an ankle sprain, you should start strengthening exercises once you can bear weight comfortably and your range of motion is near full. There are several types of strengthening exercises. It is easiest to begin with isometric exercises that you do by pushing against a fixed object with your ankle.
Once you have mastered isometric exercises, you can progress to isotonic exercises. In isotonic exercises, you use your ankle's range of motion against some form of resistance. The photos below show isotonic exercises performed with a resistance band, which you can get from your local physical therapist or a sporting goods store.
After the initial pain and swelling from your ankle sprain have subsided (usually within 5-7 days) and you can tolerate weight on your foot, you can begin stretching exercises in stages. The goal of these exercises is to restore your ankle's range of motion.
Once ankle range of motion has been almost or completely restored, you must strengthen your ankle. Along with strengthening, you should work toward a feeling of stability and comfort in your ankle, which foot and ankle ankle orthopaedic specialists call proprioception.