A fifth metatarsal fracture is a break of the most lateral of the metatarsals (long bones in the foot). This bone, located on the outside of the foot, is commonly fractured in older patients.
A fracture of certain parts of the fifth metatarsal, such as the midshaft of the bone or at the base of the bone, can be treated without surgery in a boot or wide shoe.
Younger athletes often break this bone at the junction between the base and midshaft, where the blood supply is tenuous. A fracture in this location is often called a Jones fracture. This area has a high rate of nonunion if the fracture is treated without surgery in a running or jumping athlete. The surgeon usually places a screw down the center of the bone to compress the fracture and get it to heal.
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