Ankle fractures

A break or breaks in one or more of the three bones that make up the ankle joint, that may or may not puncture the skin.

Enquiries & Appointments

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What is an ankle fracture?

The ankle is formed by the meeting of three bones, the talus in the foot and the tibia and fibula in the leg. An ankle fracture is a common injury that refers to a fracture in one or more of these bones as a result of a fall or impact. The fracture can sometimes result in dislocation of the ankle, therefore different types of treatment are available dependent on the injury itself.

Need to know

While it may often be obvious that you've fractured your ankle, sometimes the symptoms are milder and you think its just a sprain. Its always worth seeing an expert to set your mind at rest.

Symptoms include:

  • pain
  • swelling
  • bruising which may extend into the foot
  • finding it difficult to move your foot or stand on it
  • skin damage in severe injuries

Your consultant will examine the area carefully and ask you details about the injury. They'll also request an X-ray to confirm the presence of a fracture.

The treatment of a broken ankle depends on whether or not the bones are out of position (displaced) and whether the ligaments have also been damaged so that the ankle is unstable and likely to cause long-term problems.

The treatment may involve just a few weeks off your feet in a supportive boot or plaster and using crutches. If the injury is more severe it may require surgery to pin or plate the bones and repair the ligaments. Ankle fractures usually take about six weeks to heal but can sometimes take several months to get back to full mobility.


What is the difference between a fracture and a break?

Our locations

Institute of Sport Exercise and Health (ISEH)

170 Tottenham Court Road W1T 7HA London
The Harley Street Clinic

The Harley Street Clinic

35 Weymouth Street W1G 8BJ London
The Portland Hospital

The Portland Hospital

205-209 Great Portland Street W1W 5AH London

Patient stories

This content is intended for general information only and does not replace the need for personal advice from a qualified health professional.