View Full Version : Definition of functional ankle instability.

02-02-2004, 04:41 AM
Dear members

Just a quick query regarding Functional Ankle Instability(FAI /
FI). It concerns the definition of FAI and more especially the
term ‘giving way’. Most studies have used the definition given by
Lentell et al 1995, or slight modifications of it to define FAI.

Regarding the term ‘giving way’ subsequent to a lateral ligament
complex sprain, my initial impression was that of a feeling which
occurs in the ankle or rearfoot during weight bearing which is
subjectively reported by individuals and not associated with an
ankle sprain or a turning over on the lateral border of the ankle.
Discussions with my colleagues have raised the following

Does ‘giving way’ merely refer to a situation where a
subject repeatedly turns on the lateral border of the
ankle/rearfoot but which is not severe enough to cause a
sprain (Definition of sprain below), or could ‘giving way’ be
associated with a subjective feeling of instability in the
ankle/rearfoot that occurs during weight bearing but which
is not associated with inversion motion of the ankle.

Sprain definition: A lateral ligament complex sprain in our
opinion involves turning over on the lateral border of the ankle
with concomitant swelling, pain and reduced weight bearing,
usually requiring medical intervention.

Is it possible that there are three distinct situations post lateral
ligament complex sprain:
· Repeated recurrent lateral ligament sprain.
· Repeated recurrent turning on the lateral border of the
ankle without sprain.
· Repeated recurrent feeling of instability in the
ankle/rearfoot without turning on the lateral border of the

If so, are there three distinct categories of functional ankle

As I am to undertake motion analysis assessment of Functional
Ankle Instability subjects and will soon be recruiting such a
population it would be important to know what definitions are
out there.

I will post all relevant answers in the near future.


Kenneth Monaghan
College Lecturer
School of Physiotherapy
University College Dublin

To unsubscribe send SIGNOFF BIOMCH-L to LISTSERV@nic.surfnet.nl
For information and archives: http://isb.ri.ccf.org/biomch-l
Please consider posting your message to the Biomch-L Web-based
Discussion Forum: http://movement-analysis.com/biomch_l