Most Common Foot and Ankle Injuries in Basketball
If you've ever watched a professional basketball game, you'd see that injuries occur pretty frequently. Foot and Ankle injuries are by far some of the most commonly injured areas by basketball players! Swift and jutting movements along with lots of running and jumping easily predispose players to injuring their legs and feet. Let's talk about some of the most common types of basketball injuries we see at Fulshear Foot and Ankle:
Achilles tendon Injuries
The Achilles tendon is the largest and strongest tendon in the body. Injuries to the Achilles are common in basketball players due to the amount of running and jumping the sport requires. These injuries may range from tendonitis to tears to full ruptures. While tendonitis may cause pain and stiffness in the back of your ankle, a tear or rupture is usually more of a sudden onset event. If it feels like someone kicked you in the back of the leg followed by a sharp pain, you may have ruptured your Achilles. The doctors at Fulshear Foot and Ankle recommend follow up as soon as possible after an acute injury, as well as any lingering pain you experience that lasts longer than a week or two.
“Lateral movement” or moving side to side on the basketball court often leads to ankle sprains. Many experienced players have experienced an ankle sprain at least once, if not many times in their careers. One reason sprains occur is because this type of movement can cause the ligaments in your ankle to over stretch, resulting in losing your balance and rolling your ankle. Severity of injury varies from weakened ligaments or full ligament tears, sometimes even with concomitant foot fractures. It is paramount that you wait the appropriate amount of time after a sprain to heal to avoid further injury. For any ankle sprain, Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation of the affected ankle should be the first method of treatment. The doctors at Fulshear Foot and Ankle recommend a medical evaluation as soon as possible to prevent a chronic condition known as lateral ankle instability.
One of the most common types of fractures that occur with ankle sprains are fifth metatarsal avulsion fractures. These fractures are caused by a tendon or fascia pulling on the bone which can pull off a small piece of the bone. Most of the time these fractures do not require surgery, but still requires evaluation by a medical professional.
Jones fractures of the fifth metatarsal are slightly further down the bone than an avulsion fracture in an area of poor bone blood supply. A Jones fracture is a fracture that can occur due to repetitive high impact or stress on the bone from running and jumping during basketball. These fractures are more common in players with high arches due to increased pressure placed on the outer part of the foot. While conservative therapy is possible with this type of injury, there may be a chance your doctor will recommend surgical fixation for highly competitive athletes.
Getting Treatment for Basketball Injuries and Other Sports Injuries
The above information is not intended for diagnostic purposes, and we recommend being evaluated by a medical professional regardless of the perceived severity of your injury. Sometimes less profound injuries can lead to larger problems down the line if they are not properly managed. You may also benefit from changing support inside your shoes, as well as exercise modifications to your training as you recover from such injuries. If you injure yourself playing basketball, do not hesitate to call Fulshear Foot and Ankle at 281-391-1212 to schedule an appointment with one of our board-certified foot and ankle surgeons. We are excited to continue to serve athletes of all levels in Fulshear, Katy, Richmond, Houston and surrounding areas!