Associated injuries found in chronic lateral ankle instability.

DIGiovanni BF, Fraga CJ, Cohen BE, Shereff MJ. Foot Ankle Int 2000 Oct;21(10):809-15.

Sixty-one patients underwent a primary ankle lateral ligament reconstruction for chronic instability between 1989 and 1996. In addition to the ligament reconstruction, all patients had evaluation of the peroneal retinaculum, peroneal tendon inspection by routine opening of the tendon sheath, and ankle joint inspection by arthrotomy. A retrospective review of the clinical history, physical exam, MRI examination, and intraoperative findings was conducted on these 61 patients. The purpose was to determine the type and frequency of associated injuries found at surgery and during the preoperative evaluation. At surgery no patients were found to have isolated lateral ligament injury. Fifteen different associated injuries were noted. The injuries found most often by direct inspection included: peroneal tenosynovitis, 47/61 patients (77%); anterolateral impingement lesion, 41/61 (67%); attenuated peroneal retinaculum, 33/61 (54%); and ankle synovitis, 30/61 (49%). Other less common but significant associated injuries included: intra-articular loose body, 16/61 (26%); peroneus brevis tear, 15/61 (25%); talus osteochondral lesion, 14/61 (23%); medial ankle tendon tenosynovitis, 3/61 (5%). The findings of this study indicate there is a high frequency of associated injuries in patients with chronic lateral ankle instability. Peroneal tendon and retinacular pathology, as well as anterolateral impingement lesions, occur most often. A high index of suspicion for possible associated injuries may result in more consistent outcomes with nonoperative and operative treatment of patients with chronic lateral ankle instability.