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Clicking ankles or feet

Please read ‘how the foot and ankles work‘ and ‘foot and ankle symptoms‘ before reading the following.

Clicking or crunching in the ankles or feet can be caused by a number of things.

Most people fear that the clicking is caused by bone hitting bone. However, thankfully nowadays this is rare. If you have this, it is likely that for many years you have been suffering severe pain and weight bearing has been very restricted. If this is you please go and see your GP for a referral to an Orthopaedic consultant as soon as possible.

If the noise is not painful it is most likely to be air pockets popping with the changes of pressure that movement causes inside the fluid of the ankle joints. Clicking ankles can also be caused by small particles swishing around in the fluid of the ankle joints.Painful clicking can be caused by soft tissue damage in the joint like cartilage that has been worn away or has broken off and is floating around in the joint. Clicking or clunking can also be caused by tendons or scar tissue slipping over the bony bits of the ankle. These things can be caused by spraining the ankle. Please click on this link to learn more about the most common cause of ligament sprain.

In summary – if your clicking ankle is also painful you need to get it checked out but if it is not painful you need not worry about it. If in any doubt please get in touch!

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