Jones Fractures and Associated Fractures of the Fifth Metatarsal

Faculty Mentor(s)

Dr. Kirk Brumels, Hope College
Professor Margaret Frens, Hope College
Professor Tonia Gruppen, Hope College
Professor Brian Dykhuizen, Hope College

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Fractures of the fifth metatarsal are one of the more commonly seen foot fractures amongst athletes, especially at the beginning of a season. They were first noted in 1902 by Sir Robert Jones and were then classified into four different types based on location of the fracture and mechanism of injury. The most common of the fifth metatarsal fractures is a Jones fracture. The other fractures of the fifth metatarsal are avulsion fractures of the tuberosity of the fifth metatarsal, shaft fractures, and stress fractures. What makes the Jones Fracture unique is that it occurs within 1.5 centimeters of the styloid process of the fifth metatarsal and typically requires at least six weeks of non-weight bearing unless the athlete undergoes surgery, in which case it may be shortened to four weeks. Careful observation must occur with a Jones fracture because they can be problematic to athletes, due to the high rate of non-union, avascular necrosis, and re-fractures because of the lack of vascular structures in the area. These complications may require open reduction internal fixation surgery and create physical activity limitations requiring careful rehabilitation. Despite all of the complications that may arise from fractures of the fifth metatarsals with proper treatment and rehabilitation the athletes will have the opportunity to return to play.

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