footballer's ankle

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An impingement exostosis around the ankle joint, which commonly occurs in footballers and others who repeatedly overstretch the ligaments and joint capsule of the ankle. Overstretching causes the edges of the bones that make up the ankle to knock against each other. This happens particularly to the front of the tibia, which knocks against the upper talus (anklebone) causing spikes of bone to develop and, if large, break off. Symptoms of footballer's ankle include pain at the front of the ankle and loss of ankle flexibility. X-rays reveal the small fragments of bone (osteophytes) and, unlike osteoarthritris, the joint space is well maintained. Surgery is sometimes required to remove the osteophytes.

Subjects: Sports and Exercise Medicine.

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