What is Fifth Metatarsal Fractures?

The fifth metatarsal is a long bone on the lateral (outside) aspect of the foot located between the small toe and the midfoot. Fifth metatarsal fractures present as sudden pain and inflammation along the lateral (outside) aspect of the foot as well as point tenderness and typically occur during running or jumping or following direct trauma or an ankle sprain injury. There are three types of fractures:

  1. A Spiral fracture is least common and typically occurs due to direct trauma to the bone.
  2. An Avulsion fracture can occur when the peroneus brevis (tendon that attaches to the base of the fifth metatarsal) pulls suddenly on the bone (e.g. inversion ankle sprain injury) breaking away a fragment of bone.
  3. A Jones Fracture is a type of stress fracture where constant stress placed upon the fifth metatarsal occurs without adequate recovery time.

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