Ankle Sprains Fact Sheet

Most ankle sprains occur when the foot is suddenly turned inward, tearing the outside ligaments. Sprains of the ligament group on the inside of the ankle are less common. There are three classifications of ankle sprains: mild, moderate, and severe.


May include pain, swelling, bruising, decreased range of motion, instability, and inability to bear full or partial weight.


Treatment is based on the severity of the sprain and may include rest, ice (15 minutes every hour – use protective barrier to avoid cold injuries), elevation of the foot, splinting or casting, physical therapy, and surgery. Crutches may be prescribed. Medications such as ibuprofen or Tylenol may be beneficial (if no contraindications/allergies).  If the employee did not sprain his/her ankle while at work, he/she will need to see his/her personal physician for evaluation and treatment. If the injury occurred at work, Employee Health Services will see and treat the employee. While awaiting the medical evaluation, the employee may try treatment suggestions discussed above.

Work status

The employee may work. The treating physician is responsible for determining if the employee has any work restrictions.

EHS Appointment Information

EHS is an appointment based clinic.  Please call our clinic at 916-734-3572 to inform us of your injury.  At that time and based on your injury we will work on a plan to see you or refer you to the contract urgent care center for a one time visit as an interim measure until an EHS provider will be able to see you.