Part 1: Ankle Functional Instability by future DPT, intern Vinny Luppino, SPT, CSCS.
Ankle functional instability can be a sequel from a previous ankle sprain. This functional instability is due to damage of tissue structures (ligaments, muscles, capsules) around the ankle that provide proprioceptive information. Proprioception is awareness of the body in space, which relies on a complex input and output system. These tissue structures provide input, along with the visual & vestibular sensory systems to the brain, which will adjust posture and coordination to create a desired output. Damage to tissue structures in the ankle disrupt the input signaling to the brain, which negativity impacts proprioception. If you are an elite-level athlete or a weekend warrior, it is extremely important to regain proprioception in the ankle following an injury.
In the December issue of JOSPT, a cross-sectional observation study looked at 18 participants with functional ankle instability following a history of ankle sprains vs. 18 healthy controls. The purpose of the study was to compare proprioceptive acuity and passive stiffness of the ankle between groups. Results concluded that the group with a history of ankle sprains scored worse in proprioceptive acuity vs. the controls. Also within the group of functional instability, those who had higher passive ankle stiffness had a greater proprioceptive acuity vs. lower ankle stiffness, which suggests that tissue stiffness plays a role in transmitting proprioceptive information. The mechanical state of the tissues around the ankle is a key consideration clinicians must factor in during the rehabilitation process.
Stay tuned for part 2 next week to see the research put into action.
Marinho H, Amaral G, Moreira B, Araujo V, Souza T, Ocarino J, Da Fonseca S. Influence of Passive Joint Stiffness of Proprioceptive Acuity in Individuals With Functional Instability of the Ankle. Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy. 2017; 47 (12): 899-904
#physicaltherapy #dptstudent #knowledgeispower #knowledgebombs #rudpt #basketball #soccer #sportsinjury #anklesprain