At the Centeno-Schultz Clinic stability is a key concept in the treatment of orthopedic injuries. Stability is one of many critical concepts discussed in Ortho 2.0. Joint instability can lead to injury, acceleration of cartilage and meniscus degeneration and an alternation in bio mechanics.
The anterior talofibular ligament (ATF) is a key lateral ligament in the ankle. Ligaments are dense fibrous tissue that connect one bone to another. Treatment options for ligament laxity include prolotherapy, platelet derived growth factors and autologous stem cell therapy.
The anterior talofibular ligament has the following characteristics:
It connects anterior fibula to neck of talus.
In dorsiflexion, its fibers are oriented 75 deg to the floor
In plantar flexion, its fibers approach vertical orientation.
The ATF ligament prevents the foot from sliding forward in relation to the shin
It is the weakest of the ankle ligaments and it’s because of this it is the one that is most commonly injured.
The anterior drawer and talar tilt tests are common tests used at the Centeno-Schultz Clinic to evaluate lateral ligament laxity.
Below is an ultrasound image of the ATF. F=fibula and T=Talus. The arrows identify the anterior talofibular ligament.