The ankle jointjointThe junction or articulation of two or more bones that permits varying degrees of motion between the bones. is a commonly injured jointjointThe junction between the ends of two adjacent bones. in the body. While ankle fractures and ankle sprains can heal well, they can also lead to problems much later in life. This is due to the wear and tear that occurs for years after the injury. This condition is called post-traumatic arthritisarthritisJoint inflammation. The term trauma means injury, and the term post-traumatic arthritisarthritisInflammation of a joint or joints resulting in pain, swelling and stiffness. is used to describe the condition of the arthritis after injury.
Degeneration is a term that describes a condition where something wears out over time. The term degenerative arthritisdegenerative arthritisDisease that leads to the gradual deterioration of a joint; also called Osteoarthritis. is used by doctors to describe a condition where a joint wears out, usually slowly over a period of many years. The term arthritis means inflammationinflammationA local response to injury due to a physical reaction (such as abrasion), or to chemical or biological agents,... of a joint, so the term degenerative arthritis means inflammationinflammationA localized tissue response initiated by the injury or destruction of vascularized tissues. Inflammation Heat,... of a joint due to wear and tear. Degenerative arthrosis is another way of describing this condition. The term arthrosis is used to describe the condition of a worn out joint. The term arthritis is used to describe the true inflammatory conditions such as gout, infection and rheumatoid arthritisrheumatoid arthritisGeneralized inflammatory joint disease..
OsteoarthritisOsteoarthritisArthritis characterized by erosion of articular cartilage, either primary or secondary to trauma or other cond..., sometimes called degenerative arthritis, is a disease that involves the breakdown of the tissuetissueA collection of similar cells and the intercellular substances surrounding them. (cartilagecartilageThe hard, thin layer of white glossy tissue that covers the end of bone at a joint. This tissue allows motion ...) that normally allows the joint to move smoothly. When the gliding surface of the cartilagecartilageA usually translucent somewhat elastic tissue that composes most of the skeleton. is gone, the bones grind against each other, creating popping sounds, painpainAn unpleasant sensation associated with actual or potential tissue damage, and mediated by specific nerve fibe... and loss of normal ankle movement. This condition occurs primarily in people over 50.
Doctors usually consider osteoarthritisosteoarthritisArthritis characterized by erosion of articular cartilage, more common in older people. much the same whether it appears years after an injury to the joint or whether it simply appears without any history of injury. Over the past several years, there has been increasing evidence that osteoarthritisosteoarthritisArthritis typically with onset during middle or old age that is characterized by degenerative (gradual deterio... is genetic, meaning that it runs in families. Research suggests that osteoarthritis that occurs without any injury may be related to differences in the chemical makeup of the articular cartilagearticular cartilageA resilient tissue that covers the surface of bones where they meet in a joint. The cells of articular cartila... with which people are born.