Predictors of recurrent lateral ankle sprains
More than half of the people who experience their first episode (index) lateral ankle sprain experience recurrent sprains.
In an effort to find the predictors of this recurrent sprain, studies have been conducted in identifying impairments after the sprains have occurred. These studies are retrospective in nature.
The purpose of this study was to identify factors using a prospective design where the participants would be tested for baseline measures and followed up over a 12-month period for lateral ankle sprain injuries.
The study included 70 participants in the control (no history of ankle sprain) group and 30 in the recent index sprain group.
Baseline data included epidemiological data, ankle instability, passive range of motion, ankle joint laxity, balance, response to pertubation, star excursion balance test, number of foot lifts during single-leg standing with eyes closed, demi-pointe balance test, proprioception, movement detection test, joint position sense test, stepping reaction time, limb laterality recognition, inversion/ eversion peak power and a functional test which included timing stairs negotiation.
Over the following 12 months, the participants of both groups were contacted monthly for any update on ankle sprains.
It was found that recurrent ankle sprains occurred in 25% of participants in the index sprain group and only 4% of controls.
Using various data analysis methods, the only 2 independent variables that predicted recurrent ankle sprains were: a history of a previous ankle sprain and younger age.
Further analysis of data also showed that a cluster of factors, i.e., younger males with a history of ankle sprain, lower ankle stability score, greater body weight and height, increased ankle joint laxity, increased correction required with single leg balance, greater inversion/ eversion peak power were at higher risk of sprain.
Similar to previous retrospective studies, the only independent factors for predicting recurrent ankle sprains were a previous history of an ankle sprain and younger age.
> From: Pourkazemi et al., Physiotherapy 104 (2018) 430-437. All rights reserved to Elsevier Ltd. Click here for the online summary.