Loose bodies in the ankle and foot
Loose bodies are small fragments of cartilage or bone that can form in joints; particularly the hip, knee and elbow, but also in the ankle joint and the joint below.
Loose bodies don’t have to cause problems and they can often be stable and fixed within the joint space. If they are free in the joint they may become trapped between the bony joint surfaces where they may give rise to twinges of pain, locking of the joint or blocked or ‘springy’ movements.
A loose body in the ankle and foot causes twinges of pain, swelling and the sensation of giving way. There may also be the sensation of locking but that usually passes quite quickly.
Physiotherapy can help by applying a special technique that stretches through the affected joint to give the loose body room to move, and then applying a few sharp flicks to jolt the loose body into a more comfortable position.
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