During a performance last Friday in Milwaukee, superstar Kelly Clarkson twisted her ankle when she fell onstage. It turns out that Clarkson sprained her ankle and also ended up with a hairline fracture. The injury has forced her off her foot and onto crutches. She posted a photo of herself in a wheelchair while having makeup applied for another appearance.
An ankle sprain often gets pushed aside. Even so, I see many patients come into my Houston podiatry practice after several months wondering why their seemingly minor sprain has continued to provide them pain and swelling. The answer is simply that they did not treat their injury early or aggressively enough.
Studies have shown that the best way to treat an acute ankle sprain is to immobilize your foot and ankle. Most commonly, this is achieved with a walking fracture boot. After approximately two weeks in the boot, you can slowly return to activity with the protection of a medical grade ankle brace. Kelly's situation, however, is complicated by a fracture. Eventhough the fracture is described to be a "hairline" fracture, it still provides an extended recovery.
A fractured bone takes 6-8 weeks to clinically heal. Considering her level of activity, especially when performing, she will likely need to slow down to let her injury heal. If she does not, the bone weakened by the fracture can worsen, leading to the displacement of the broken bone. This would require even more time to recover which also may entail surgery.
From the public accounts so far, Kelly Clarkson has sought and received what looks like appropriate treatment so far. Lets hope that she continues to take her injury seriously so she can get back to full form onstage with no further problems. If you have suffered a twisted ankle, don't wait for it to improve on its own. Contact Dr. Andrew Schneider for a full evaluation and treatment to get you back to the activities you love.