A New Radiographic Classification for Distal Shaft Fifth Metatarsal Fractures

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Abstract

In the present report, a new radiographic classification for distal shaft fractures of the fifth metatarsal is presented. The classification system is based on a review of 79 spiral oblique fractures of the distal shaft of the fifth metatarsal. The sample was grouped into “grades” of deformity according to the configuration of the fracture and the amount of displacement observed for each injury. Four distinct fracture configurations emerged as a result of our radiographic analysis, and these were categorized as grades I, IIA, IIB, and III. Grade II fractures were most prevalent and accounted for 49% of the cases reviewed. Grade I and III fractures accounted for 29% and 22% of the distal fifth metatarsal fractures, respectively. To our knowledge, a classification system for fractures of the distal shaft of the fifth metatarsal has not been previously reported. The radiographic classification that we have proposed is intended to aid surgeons treating and discussing fractures localized to the distal portion of the fifth metatarsal.

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