Elastic bands, called ligaments, connect bones together and hold joints in place. Ankles and knees are the most commonly sprained body parts due to trauma.


Symptoms of a sprain are more severe depending on how much the ligament has been torn. They include:

  • Throbbing pain
  • Bruising
  • Swelling
  • Inability to move afflicted area


Sprains are generally easy to treat and usually require about 6 months to fully heal. A patient should:

  • Rest for the first 48 hours after injury. Elevating the injured area above the heart when possible will reduce swelling.
  • Ice the area for 20-minute intervals about eight times a day for the first two days after injury.
  • Compress the afflicted area with a wrap or ace bandage.
  • Start physical therapy after the first 48 hours to strengthen the sprained area and reduce recovery time.


Tendons are tissues that connect muscle to bone. A strain is a tear in the tendon or actual muscle. It can develop over time with constant pulling or twisting of the muscle or can happen as a sudden injury.


Symptoms of a strain depend of the severity of the case, such as:


  • Conservative treatments are used for mild strains. However, severe tears in tendons may require surgery.
  • Pain medications like ibuprofen may be prescribed.
  • Physical therapy will aid in recovery time through icing and exercise.


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