5th metatarsal fractures are a common injury often associated with ankle sprains.
The fracture can involve the base, 5th tarsometatarsal joint or the shaft of the metatarsal.
What are the symptoms?
- Pain, swelling and bruising on the outside border of the foot.
- Pain when weight bearing.
Zone 1 Injuries
- These are the most common.
- They can extend into the joint.
- They commonly occur after rolling over on the ankle.
- The cause for the injury is avulsion of the metatarsal base due to the attachment of the plantar fascia.
Distal metatarsal shaft fractures
- This is also called a dancers fracture
- Often a spiral fracture
What is the non operative treatment?
- Cam boot or stiff soled shoe
- Full weight bearing as pain allows.
- Discard boot or shoe when comfortable to weight bear in normal shoes.
- Cam Boot should not exceed 6 weeks.
- Gradual return to normal activities once as pain allows.
- Physiotherapy can help with a strength and balance program once the pain has settled.
When to consider surgery?
- Significant displacement at the joint in Zone 1 injuries.
- Significant angulation or translation in shaft fractures.
- Painful non union after 3 months.
When is the fracture healed?
The fracture is clinically healed when the swelling and pain has resolved.
This usually takes around 6 weeks.
X-rays taken at this time will not show complete bony union.
Xrays may take at least 3 months to see complete bony healing of the fracture.
It may take at least 3 months to see complete bony healing on the fracture on xrays.
If you have any questions please contact Mr Curry’s rooms on (03) 99286560