Treatment for chronic ankle pain varies based on the cause of the condition, according to the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society. Conservative treatments involve anti-inflammatory medications such as ibuprofen or aspirin to reduce swelling and physical therapy to strengthen muscles and enhance range of motion.
Chronic ankle pain can also be treated with an ankle brace or supportive device, immobilization and rest to allow for healing of a sprain or fracture, or an injection of steroid medication into the ankle to increase mobility, explains the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society. Surgical options for treatment include cleaning the joint surface or joint, repairing and reconstructing tendons or ligaments, and removing loose fragments within the ankle. Surgical procedures may involve open surgery or arthroscopic techniques to repair or reconstruct bones, ligaments and tendons within the ankle causing chronic pain. Rehabilitation typically takes six to 10 weeks for proper healing.
Chronic ankle pain commonly stems from an injury that has produced a fracture or sprain, according to the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society. Recovering patients should complete a physical rehabilitation program as prescribed by a physician and refrain from activity until cleared by a medical professional. A supportive brace may need to be worn when returning to normal activities.