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Inversion vs eversion sprains

April 17, 2012

So, I have been promising for a while that I would have some more discussion about the mechanics of how sprains work.

Well, my first post is going to be on the two different types of sprains – inversion vs eversion. In a later post I will talk about the different grades of sprains, which are related to the intensity (and hence the recovery time) of a sprain.

As I said there are two different types of sprains:


An inversion sprain occurs when your foot is ‘inverted’. In other words, it occurs when your falls inward. As I said before, sprains occur when too much pressure is placed on the ankle or it is twisted for some reason. In an inversion sprain, this pressure is placed to force your foot inward. For a better understanding of this, here is a image of one of the sprains:












As you can see, in an inversion sprain the ankle rolls inward, stretching the outside of your foot. As an inversion sprain stretches the ligaments on the outside of the ankle (the lateral ligaments), this is where the damage occurs in these sorts of sprains (and where the pain occurs).

Apparently, approximately 90% of ankle sprains are inversion sprains.


The second type of ankle sprain are eversion sprains. As you can probably guess in this sort of sprain your foot would be twisted outwards. Here is a graphic of an eversion sprain:


Unfortunately, as eversion sprains a less common (only 10% of sprains) it is harder to get good images of them. However, as you can hopefully see in an eversion sprain the ankle is rolled outwards stretching the inside of your foot. In eversion sprains, the inner ligaments, or the Medial or Deltoid ligaments, are injured.

I suffered from an inversion sprain, so the focus of my pain is on the outside of my foot. However, I also did is so well to damage the ligaments at the front and back of my foot, which I think is pretty impressive.

I will talk about other ligaments and grades of sprains later on.

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