Ankle arthroscopy after ankle sprains

Manuel Bondi, Antonio Zanini, Andrea Pizzoli


Introduction. Anterior ankle impingement is a syndrome characterized by pain during movement, mainly dorsiflexion, and sometimes by functional restriction.

This syndrome predominantly affects athletes, but could be found also in people with lower functional demands with an history of previous untreated or poorly treated ankle sprain.

The study aim is to evaluate the results of arthroscopic therapy of the ankle impingement syndrome for grades I–III lesions in Scranton’s score.

Material and methods. 42 patients (24 men and 18 women) have undergone ankle arthroscopy for chronic ankle pain impingement. The mean age was 34,62 years. The average follow-up (FU) was 24,93 months.

Clinical outcomes were assessed at the time of FU using the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society (AOFAS) score, a self-administered Foot and Ankle Disability Index (FADI) score, the VAS scale and patients satisfaction.

Results. The AOFAS mean score was 96,09, the average FADI score was 131,48, the average VAS score was 0,76. Forty (95%) patients reported their outcome as excellent or very good.

Conclusion. The results of the study show that ankle arthroscopy with resection of hypertrophic synovium and fibrous bands after an ankle sprain haven proven to be a reliable therapy for a posttraumatic impingement syndrome of the ankle that does not respond to conservative treatment.

Ankle arthroscopy is an excellent diagnostic tool in order to find specific lesions which have been undetected in previous instrumental investigations; at the same time it enables to perform surgery bringing the benefits of minimal invasiveness, low post-surgical rate complications and early recovery to rehabilitation treatment.


ankle sprain, ankle arthroscopy, ankle impingement, impingement syndrome, Arthroscopic synovectomy

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