Fractures of the Talus
Torrance Foot & Ankle Specialists
The talus is a bone that makes up the lower part of the ankle, or subtalar
joint, between the fibula and tibia bones of the lower leg and the calcaneus
(heel bone). It connects the leg and the foot and allows for upward and
downward movement of the ankle. Because the talus is important for walking
and inversion / eversion of the foot, talus bone fractures can greatly
Talus fractures are a break in the ankle bone which causes pain, swelling,
bruising, and an inability to walk or bear weight on the ankle. In most
cases, talus fractures result from high-energy injuries and sudden impact
trauma, including falls from heights and auto accidents. These fractures
can also result from twisting the ankle, which can cause small fragments
or chips of bone to break off from the edges of the talus.
Talus fractures can lead to chronic arthritis, foot impairment, and other
long-term complications when left untreated, which is why it becomes critical
to seek treatment. At Torrance Memorial Physician Network, our foot and
ankle specialists conduct thorough and personalized evaluations in order
to arrive at an accurate diagnosis and create a tailored plan for treatment.
Treatment of Talus Fractures
Due to severe pain and symptoms, many people who suffer talus fractures
may first seek initial treatment at an urgent care or the emergency room.
Upon follow-up with a specialist, specific treatment plans can be created
based on the type of fracture and its severity.
Talus fractures that are stable, or well-aligned, can be effectively treated
through nonsurgical methods, including:
- Casting – Casting will immobilize and protect the ankle while the
bones heal. Patients will commonly wear a cast for 6 to 8 weeks, and may
be asked to limit the amount of weight they bear on the affected ankle.
This is because the bones will need to heal enough for a patient to be
able to bear weight without the risk of displacement.
- Physical therapy – Physical therapy, stretching, and exercises can
be used after casting to help strengthen the ankle and foot, restore range
of motion, and improve function.
Due to the high-energy impact that typically causes these breaks, talus
fractures are usually not stable, and therefore require surgery to set
and stabilize bones in the ankle. Ensuring that displaced bones are properly
aligned through surgery can improve outcomes and reduce the risk of future
- Open reduction and internal fixation – Using screws or metal plates
to hold the ankle in place, surgical treatment for a talus fracture involves
the repositioning, or reduction, of bone fragments into correct alignment
and fixation. Depending on the severity of the break, patients may be
required to wear a splint or cast for several weeks following surgery.
They will also receive regular monitoring to ensure the bones are aligned
and properly healing. Gradually, they will begin physical therapy, motion
exercises, and weight-bearing exercises.
Request an Appointment
Treating a talus fracture is critical to ensuring proper function of the
ankle and limiting future risks, and it should be done as soon as possible
after an injury. Our board-certified specialists are readily available
to help when you call to request an appointment.