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Despite the fact that the ankle complex is endowed with multiple structural supports, it is the most commonly injured part in the body.1 As elsewhere, injuries to this area can be either microtraumatic or macrotraumatic. Due to the many articulations, ligament and muscular attachments, and a complex biomechanical arrangement, obtaining an accurate diagnosis necessitates a thorough knowledge of surface anatomy and biomechanics combined with the findings of a detailed history and physical examination.


Foot problems may result from trauma, congenital abnormalities, overuse, systemic illness, or poorly fitting shoes. Epidemiologically, lateral ankle sprains are the most common sports injuries.


The majority of the support provided to the ankle and foot joints (Table 10-1) comes by way of the arrangement of the ankle mortise and by the numerous ligaments found here (Table 10-2). Further stabilization is afforded by an abundant number of tendons that cross this joint complex (Table 10-3) (Table 10-4) (Figures 10-1, 10-2, and 10-3). These tendons are also involved in producing foot and ankle movements and are held in place by retinaculi.

Table 10-1 the Joints of the Foot and Ankle: Their Open-Packed, Close-Packed Positions, and Capsular Patterns
Table 10-2 Ankle and Foot Joints and Associated Ligaments

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