The talar tilt test is a physical examination maneuver used to assess for instability of the ankle joint. It is performed by placing the patient’s foot in a plantarflexed and everted position, then applying a medial force to the talus. If the talus tilts more than 10 degrees, then it is considered positive for ankle instability and injury to both the anterior talofibular and calcaneofibular ligaments.
The talar tilt test is a useful tool in the diagnosis of ankle instability, but it has several limitations. First, the test is highly reliant on the examiner’s ability to apply an adequate amount of force to the talus.
Second, the test may be difficult to reproduce if the patient has significant muscle spasm or guarding.
Further imaging studies, such as an MRI, may be warranted to confirm the diagnosis and determine the extent of injury. Treatment of an unstable ankle joint typically involves immobilization in a cast or boot followed by physical therapy to regain range of motion and strength.
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