Fifth metatarsal fractures among male professional footballers: A potential career-ending disease

  • Ekstrand J
  • Van Dijk C
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Abstract

Background There is little information about Metatarsal Five (MT-5) fractures for specific sports. Objective To study the occurrence, the imaging characteristics, the lay-off times and healing problems of MT-5 fractures among male footballers. Methods Sixty-four European elite teams were monitored from 2001 to 2012. x-Rays were collected and classified by the Torg criteria. Results Of 13 754 injuries, 0.5% (67) proved to be MT-5 fractures. Their incidence was 0.04 injuries/1000 h of exposure. A team of 25 players might thus expect an MT-5 fracture every fifth season. Of these fractures, 67% (38) were primary and 33% were refractures. One of the 38 primary fractures was an avulsion of the tuberosity; all the others (97%) located towards the base. In total, 32% of the players with MT-5 fracture were younger than 21 years, 40% of the fractures occurred during the preseason and 45% of the players had prodromal symptoms. In total, 54% of the initial x-rays were classified as Torg type II (stress fractures), and 46% were classified as Torg type I (acute type). After surgical treatment the fractures healed faster, compared with conservative treatment (75% vs 33%, p

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Authors

  • Jan Ekstrand

  • C. Niek Van Dijk

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