A trimalleolar fracture is a form of ankle fracture. It develops if 3 different areas in the ankle, specifically the malleoli are fractured. These bones stick out of the ankle.
The injury can stem from a variety of injuries such as falls, sports injury or vehicular accident.
What are the signs?
Some of the indications of a trimalleolar fracture strikingly resemble other forms of ankle fractures such as:
- Intense ankle pain
- Inability to walk
- Deformity of the ankle
- Significant swelling
Management of a trimalleolar fracture
A trimalleolar fracture is considered as an unstable type of fracture. Surgical intervention is usually the suggested treatment option. Conservative measures are suggested only if surgery poses as a risk due to other health conditions.
The doctor might suggest an over-the-counter or prescription pain medication as a component of the treatment plan.
The objective of surgery is to stabilize the ankle and promote faster healing. The procedure performed is based on the seriousness of the injury.
The surgical procedure might involve measures to stabilize to joint such as:
- Realignment of the bones
- Insertion of screws or pins
- Insertion of a plate and screws
- Wiring of the bones together
After surgery, the individual should wear a splint, cast or brace depending on his/her condition.
In case treatment is delayed and deformity is evident, additional surgery is performed later to fix any leftover deformity.
It usually takes around 6 weeks for a trimalleolar fracture to recuperate. If the ligaments or tendons are damaged, the healing process might be longer.
Additionally, the recovery time can be affected by other health conditions, seriousness of the injury and extent of the surgery and if the individual smokes.
More Information / Disclaimer
The information posted on this page on a trimalleolar fracture is for learning purposes only. Learn to recognize the signs and how it is treated by taking a standard first aid course with Ottawa First Aid.