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Lamelo Ball’s Broken Ankle

There is a clear intersection between basketball and podiatry, as ankle sprains are unfortunately one of the most common injuries viewed in basketball players.

Earlier this year, Charlotte Hornets guard LaMelo Ball suffered a right fracture ankle following a non-contact ankle sprain. In isolation, this appeared to be a ‘freak’ accident that could have happened to anyone and could be put down to pure bad luck for Ball. Whilst it is true that it could have happened to anyone, when analysing LaMelo’s injury history, it became apparent that he was already at risk of suffering from further lateral ankle injuries

Since October 11 of 2022, LaMelo Ball had suffered a total of 4 ankle sprains resulting in extended periods of time away from playing basketball. According to literature on return to sport protocols following ankle injuries, once an ankle sprain occurs up to 80% of athletes will suffer recurrent sprains and 72% will develop chronic instability. Not only are there clear disruptions in the strength and stability of the ankle joint, but the return to sport pressures would almost certainly contribute to this data. In addition to this, basketball athletes are 5 times more likely to reinjure a previously injured ankle. Considering this data, it may be concluded that a more serious ankle injury was imminent for LaMelo Ball whilst continuing to play elite level basketball with a severely injured ankle. 

Talaria Podiatrist: Ankle injury

Whilst the specifics of Ball’s injury were not detailed other than an ankle injury requiring surgery, it is possible that he suffered an avulsion fracture of the distal fibula. The fibula is the long non-weight bearing bone in your lower leg that at its distal point makes up the ankle joint. The fibula has many grooves for ligament attachment that stabilize and provide leverage during ankle movements. 

ankle sprains

On severe ankle sprains, the strain placed on the lateral ankle ligaments can cause the ligament to pull a piece of bone away. Depending on the severity, treatment options include a long period in a moon boot or surgery with plates and screws to immobilize the bone. 

Although a serious injury, LaMelo will make a full recovery and be ready for the 2023/2024 NBA season in October.

If you are in need of podiatry treatment today – book through this link! We offer specialist sports podiatry treatment here at Talaria – Podiatrist of Thornbury!

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