Friday, April 6, 2018

Tony Finau... Ankle Dislocation! He is now my second favorite golfer!!

When Tony Finau hit the Par 3 Hole in One Contest at the Masters this week his celebration caused for jubilation for his achievement, that quickly turned into horror by the spectators and Tony himself.  The video below from ESPN shows Tony Finau discussing his phenomenal day of golf at the Masters after possibly dislocating his ankle.

As Tony's excitement for nailing this shot in one try turns into the 100 meter dash, it quickly turns bad as he turns twisting and we see his foot go one direction and his ankle go the other. Yikes! I'm a foot doctor and even I find this difficult to watch,  But what comes next in this video might be even more shocking, Tony leans over to his left side, uses the ground to push his foot back in the correct direction and stabilizes his ankle with counter pressure to pop that ankle back in place like a robot or something. What? Insane right! Then he gets up and not with the speed he made his way down the fairway but walks back toward the tee box! I have watched football and basketball players dislocate their ankles but they don't get up like this. It was incredible! They literally could use this video in podiatry and orthopedic residencies on how to relocate an ankle.

At first when I heard the news of Tony Finau's ankle dislocation but then saw he played the next day and was leading, I immediately thought he couldn't have possibly dislocated his ankle.  But then I watched the video and it looks like it to me! He apparently had a MRI that shows no structural damage he said, but it looks like his soft tissue could not have been spared. There he was there at the Masters the very next day crushing it on the golf course.

I know in my practice if we are treating an ankle dislocation conservatively, especially if the patient is a super hero and has relocated it himself and there is no associated fracture, we wouldn't recommended golfing the next day, or the next day. Our goal would be control the swelling and having the patient ice and elevate as much as humanly possible for a week or more and an anti-inflammatory by mouth for a week or two.  They would be made non weight bearing but given a pneumatic cam-walking boot for touch down with crutches or a knee walker.  This type of injury can require repair of the soft tissues affected, but even with out surgery they are usually in a cam walking boot for 6 to 8 weeks.

So to see Tony out golfing the next day really made me rub my eyes in disbelief!  Could I have imagined his injury was worse than it really was? No I watched the video again, we all saw it.  So it does beg the question of what is the doctor doing? I'm hoping for Tony's sake he is just icing, wrapped really well by a good trainer and maybe on a steroid by mouth.(again this would not be my recommended treatment regimen)  This is in no way, shape or form ideal, but maybe when you make to the big show like the Masters Golf Tournament you do whatever it takes to compete.

As we have one little golfer in the family, I explained to her what happened(I didn't want to show my 12 year old the video) and I told her to not run while golfing. She replied "Mom, I golf so I don't have to run!".  Which is even funnier because our oldest daughter is a runner and youngest a soccer player! She is my favorite golfer but now I have a second favorite golfer in Tony Finau!!

My hopes and prayers are for a fantastic rest of the Masters for Tony Finau.  I have seen a lot of things in my 44 years here on this Earth, but watching him pop that ankle back in place and then play like that... he is amazing! I also wish him a speedy recovery because he's going to need a lot of rest, ice and elevation after this!

If you would like to learn more about ankle sprains, the less serious injury that can happen when your foot rolls under the ankle follow the link here to learn more:

Michele McGowan
3190 Citrus Tower Blvd Ste A
Clermont, FL 34711

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