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What is a bimalleolar fracture?

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Quick Answer

According to About Health, a bimalleolar fracture is one that occurs when both the inner and the outer sides of the ankle are injured. When this type of fracture occurs, the entire ankle joint becomes unstable.

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Full Answer

About Health notes that bimalleolar fractures affect the structural integrity of the ankle joint. Since the ankle is unstable, it is vulnerable to further damage as well as an early onset of ankle arthritis if the fracture isn't properly treated. In most cases, surgery, metal plates and screws are needed to mend the fracture and stabilize the unbalanced joint.

Bimalleolar equivalent ankle fractures and trimalleolar ankle fractures are subsets of bimalleolar fractures. A bimalleolar equivalent ankle fracture usually occurs with a ligament injury to the inner side of the ankle and a fracture in the lateral malleolus. Bimalleolar equivalent ankle fractures also require surgery to repair even though the inner-side bone wasn't injured. Trimalleolar fractures occur when the back of the tibia is also injured.

About Health reports that if there is inflammation or pain from the inner side of the ankle, then there's a chance that a bimalleolar ankle fracture has occurred. Medical professionals might request stress x-rays in order to find indications of instability at the ankle joint.

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