Fractured fibula: What are the signs?

The fibula is a leg bone positioned amidst the knee and ankle joints. The bone can be damaged close to the knee, at the middle shaft or at the ankle region.

The indication of the injury is typically near the fracture, but the fibula can be damaged along with other injuries that result to other symptoms in other parts of the body. An X-ray of the ankle and lower leg is taken to assess the fibula and other adjacent bones for damage.

Discomfort and tenderness

A fractured fibula can result to pain and tenderness over any region of the fibula. If other ligaments and bones are damaged, tenderness and pain might be near the damaged structures.


A bruise is a usual indication of a fracture. The bruising might develop at the site of the fractured fibula or away from the area depending on how the fluid moves through the tissues bordering the injury.


In case the fracture occurs with dislocation of the ankle, it might result to an abnormal appearance of the ankle.

Difficulty in bearing weight

The doctor often utilizes guidelines to help in assessing whether an injury might require an X-ray. The criteria generally include bone tenderness over the exterior or interior of the ankle and inability to bear any weight. Generally, the individual could not bear any weight if he/she has a fractured fibula.


The site of the injury has a variety of deformities. If the middle shaft is affected, it results to deformity in the lower leg amidst the ankle and knee.

If the fracture is near the ankle, it causes an unusual appearance to it. In case the fracture occurs with dislocation of the ankle, it might result to an abnormal appearance of the ankle.

Neurovascular damage

A detrimental effect of a fractured fibula is damage to the blood vessels and nerves which are close to one another. An injury to the common peroneal nerve can be brought about by a fracture or by the mechanism that triggered the injury.

If the common peroneal nerve is damaged, it results to tingling, numbness and weakness in the foot and lower leg. Any form of vascular damage can lead to bleeding or buildup of blood in the lower leg.

More Information / Disclaimer

The information posted on this page on a fractured fibula is for learning purposes only. Learn to recognize and manage the injury by taking a standard first aid course with Vancouver First Aid.



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