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Information and guidance for public, NHSGGC staff, and community-based services.  Hospital visiting restrictions now in place.

MSK Physiotherapy - Foot & Ankle

Important Facts About Your Ankle - Please Read

Here is a list of the main problems and concerns we would recommend you get checked out by a health professional before starting self-management exercises. These are called 'Red Flags' and may indicate a more serious problem that requires medical assessment.

Symptoms that are present After Trauma

If your symptoms are caused by a recent traumatic incident (e.g. a fall, football tackle) and you have any of the following symptoms:

  • Extensive bruising and/ or swelling
  • Discolouration e.g. your foot looks pale, blue or red
  • Severe pain and very limited movement
  • Joint deformity eg foot looks like it is in the wrong place
  • New lumps and bumps that appear after the trauma
  • Great difficulty putting weight through your leg
  • Numbness/ tingling into your foot after trauma
  • Feeling of instability

Please Note: If you have a known diagnosis of osteoporosis (low bone density) a small amount of force may cause problems that require medical assessment.

Symptoms where No Trauma was Involved

  • Sudden loss of active movement with or without pain
  • Redness, heat and swelling of the joint/ surrounding area
  • Increasing numbers of joints that are painful and/or stiff
  • Fever or generally feeling unwell at same time as your foot pain developed
  • Unexplained numbness/ tingling into your foot
  • Constant pain which does not change with rest or activity
  • Significant worsening pain at night
  • Unexplained weight loss and/ or a previous history of cancer
  • Unexplained lumps and bumps that appear or are changing/ growing
  • Difficulty lifting the front part of your foot/ catching or dragging your foot when walking

Please Note: Special attention should be taken if you have a history of long-term steroid or immunosuppressive drug use, recent joint replacement, recent steroid injection, rheumatoid arthritis or other joint disease, recent infection, Intravenous drug use or alcohol misuse.



Last Updated: 27 August 2021