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The Role of Ultrasound in the Management of Ankle Sprains and a Clinically Relevant Geisinger Ankle Sprain Sports Ultrasound Protocol.

Ankle sprains are the most common lower extremity injury in physically active individuals. These injuries are classified as lateral, medial, and/or syndesmotic. Treatment may include functional rehabilitation, bracing, weight-bearing restriction, medications, injections, and surgery. While most sprains heal rapidly, permanent disability and pain may arise. Diagnostic ultrasound has been demonstrated to be accurate in diagnosing ligamentous injuries, but it is often excluded from management algorithms that rely on physical examination alone to diagnose significant injuries. This article proposes a comprehensive, evidence-based diagnostic ankle ultrasound protocol to implement in conjunction with thorough history and physical examination. We also review the current literature to describe where this protocol most improves diagnostic accuracy compared with physical examination alone.

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