Q. What can cause sudden ankle swelling and pain?

Answered by
Dr. Sumit Chawla
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on May 10, 2016 and last reviewed on: Feb 19, 2020

Hello doctor,

Patient's left leg is swollen at ankle with severe pain at the joint for the past 10 days. He is unable to walk regularly as before. He has taken antibiotic and still the pain remains the same. Patient has done x-ray and blood test and everything seems to be fine. There is no accident or any hit there. He used to go for evening walk daily for around 3 to 5 km. These symptoms started 10 days ago. Patient is 61 years old, having gastric issue and has undergone stomach surgery twice. Please advise me how to deal with his health issue.



Welcome to

I guess you are talking about your father here in this query.

  • Acute or sudden onset of ankle pain in a 61 year old male, who was previously healthy, can be due to many reasons such as:
  1. Cellulitis.
  2. Ankle sprain.
  3. Tendinitis.
  4. Synovitis of the ankle joint.
  5. Retrocalcaneal bursitis.
  6. Fracture.

To arrive at a provisional diagnosis kindly answer these questions.

  • Any history of joint pains in family? Is there any swelling or pain in other body joint?
  • Does he have pain at single part of joint or a diffuse pain over the joint?
  • Is there any redness or excruciating pain in just touching the ankle joint?
  • Any history of fever? Has he lost weight recently or does not feel like eating?
  • For what condition has he undergone gastric surgery? Please provide clinical notes or prescriptions along with blood reports and x-ray.

Follow up with answers to the above questions for better evaluation of his condition to an orthopaedician and traumatologist online -->

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