Injuries to the leg between the knee and the ankle are common in athletes, particularly in runners, hockey players, and soccer players. When you visit your physician about the injury, he or she will ask a series of questions, including when the pain started, how severe it is, and which activities make it worse (or better).
Following the physical exam, your physician will probably order an X-ray or an MRI to detect the location and severity of any fractures.
Physicians at Methodist Orthopedics & Sports Medicine treat a range of lower-leg conditions, including:
Your physician will develop a plan of treatment based on your specific injury.
- For nonfracture injuries such as shin splints, your doctor may simply recommend rest along with ice therapy and/or anti-inflammatory medications.
- If you have a non-displaced fracture — that is, if the bone's alignment is still intact — your doctor may recommend a cast to hold the bone in place while it heals.
- If you have a displaced fracture — if the bone has broken into two or more fragments — surgery to install screws and/or plates in and around the bone is usually needed to piece the fragments back together and ensure proper healing.
Recovery from orthopedic leg surgery may take several months. During your recovery, you'll probably be allowed to move the knee but not put any weight on the leg. The length of your recovery time and the limitations on your activity will depend on the fracture type and how quickly the fracture heals.
Texas Medical Center
Physicians marked with an asterisk (*) are fellowship-trained in treating neck and spine conditions.