Look for this and other related articles in Instructional Course Lectures, Volume 58, which will be published by the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons in February 2009:"Avoiding Complications in Fracture Care of the Tibia," by Lisa K. Cannada, MD, Dolfi Herscovici Jr., DO, Robert F. Ostrum, MD, Jeffrey O. Anglen, MD, and Michael T. Archdeacon, MDFractures of the foot and ankle are common injuries. Many are successfully treated nonoperatively; however, some injuries require surgical intervention. To attain satisfactory results of such surgery, surgeons must pay attention to detail and understand common, avoidable complications. Despite what seems like a plethora of information and advice in the literature, ranging from Continuing Medical Education (CME) courses, seminars, and telecommunications, avoidable complications still occur because of a lack of appreciation of a few basic principles. Avoiding mistakes will improve the results achieved by restoring the anatomy and avoiding the need for additional surgery. This lecture outlines the pathological characteristics of three common injuries of the foot and ankle as well as the potential mistakes and the repair of those mistakes involved in the treatment of these injuries.