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Foot & Ankle Problems Message Board


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I broke my 5th metatarsal in March 2007 and was in a cast until July 07, then a boot until end of Oct. 07. This bone is notorious for slow healing and traditional treatment requires complete non-weight bearing if the break is diagnosed as a true jones fracture. Have you seen a foot and ankle specialist? Many emergency docs and family practice docs do not know how to distinguish the difference between a jones fracture, which requires total immobilization and non-weightbearing and a dancer fracture, which could with stand some weightbearing. It is crucial to make sure that your fracture is treated properly or it will not heal without surgical insertion of pins. Either way, try to keep your foot elevated to limit swelling, which can reduce the circulation needed to heal the bone. Stay off of it as much as is possible. You can read previous threads I have written about this type of fracture to get an idea of some of the issues you may have and how I, and others, have dealt with this type of injury.

Good luck and keep coming back to let us know how you are doing.
You need to have a serious conversation with a foot specialist. I cannot stress that enough. A break of the 5th met. is a very serious one that is more often than not going to need surgery in order to heal. It has very high rates of non-union of the bone and pins/screws are required to encouage healing. The pain you are having is strong evidence that the break is unstable and the weight you place on it is doing MORE damage. This is a strong indication that you have a fracture that needs complete non-weight bearing. If the fracture is not taken care of properly, by docs who know what needs to be done, you could be setting yourself up for a lifetime of foot problems. Please get your mum to take you to a specialist to be evaluated as soon as possible. I have been through this and the healing process is a long one even WITH immediate and proper care--the longer you wait, the more problems you may have with a long, long time on crutches.
[QUOTE=relteach;3865487]You need to have a serious conversation with a foot specialist. I cannot stress that enough. A break of the 5th met. is a very serious one that is more often than not going to need surgery in order to heal. It has very high rates of non-union of the bone and pins/screws are required to encouage healing. The pain you are having is strong evidence that the break is unstable and the weight you place on it is doing MORE damage. This is a strong indication that you have a fracture that needs complete non-weight bearing. If the fracture is not taken care of properly, by docs who know what needs to be done, you could be setting yourself up for a lifetime of foot problems. Please get your mum to take you to a specialist to be evaluated as soon as possible. I have been through this and the healing process is a long one even WITH immediate and proper care--the longer you wait, the more problems you may have with a long, long time on crutches.[/QUOTE]

I did call my doctor tonight and he told me to take it easy. Like what you said on this post, sometimes these breaks never fully heal! When he said that, I asked him that is the likelyhood of that happening but he said I can't tell you right now. I was also told to wait til my next check up on Feb 16th so worry about that sort of thing. He also told me I am meant to walk, softly on the foot, but dont over do it. From what he told me, my break was small but I also hurt the ligments around the bone too. So there wasn't much he could tell me. What I might do is call the local hospital and talk to the nurses or doctor I saw ages ago and ask him.

Im sorry if I am acting like a drama queen but its my foot and Im worried. I am glad that you listen and help me with questions.
[QUOTE=Starrbelie123;3867233]Hey Welsh Girl! I broke my 5th Met on October 25, 2008. Like Relteach I had a true Jones Fracture. I had surgery to place a screw on Nov 14th. I was non-weight bearing for 12 weeks and I am still in a walking boot. I have only been weight bearing for 2 weeks. I should be in a reqular shoe in a couple of weeks. My advise to you is the same advise my surgeon gave me when I started weight bearing...if it hurts...STOP! The 5th met is the hardest bone in the body to get to heal. It has the highest occurence of non-union. It is not a fracture to play around with. Take things slow and listen to your body not what others are telling you. You are the only one who knows when your foot hurts. When you see your doc ask lots of questions and get him to explain to your family why it is important to go slow.[/QUOTE]

I do take care now. Like you said, it's my foot not other people's foot! I went out for a meal last night (family meal) and found it hard as hell. I was helped up stairs, I will admit going down them with the crutches is easy if the steps are wide and big. When we got into the place, they had sat us up MORE stairs and then moved us around the bullding to find a better seat! It was nice to get out and have some fresh air! I then met another woman (she was older then me) who broke her left foot and had pins to heel the break. She also had a stormtooper walking boot on, it's like a ski boot and I loved the idea of one of them. It seems she had the same boot as me for 5 weeks but was given the other boot when that time was over. She told my parents it's my body and foot, I can't push it. My Mum seems to understand now. I dont want to push it and make it worse. Yet more I go out and walk, I wont feel like I am going stir crazy.

I am still seeing my GP next week for a chat and infomation. He wants to see me after my phone call to him this week. I guess it's good to have my GP to take a look and have a good chat to him. It means alot to me.

Also thanks again to everyone on here. Once this happened, I looked around online and got some rather nasty remarks on other boards, but everyone on here has been great and so helpful! So thanks again :)
I sympathize totally. I also have a fifth metatarsal break (12 days ago) which is small I think. I looked at the x-rays and the break did not go all the way through and I think, I hope, that makes it heal faster. you said yours was small, have you seen your x-rays? I have a list, ready for my next visit. If you have tons of questions don't be embarrassed to go in with a list so you don't forget anything.
And don't worry about worrying and also don't feel like a "pest" by asking questions. Your doctor makes a lot of money and he/she should take the time with you!
I did see my xrays and it looked small, tiny infact. I couldnt see it when I was looking, the doctor had to show me by pointing his pen at the break! I was told to walk but dont over it, so when I walk now, I place the bad foot down but wont add to much pressure, the pain still hurts if I do. Can I ask how did you break your metatarsal? All I did was twist my food while walking into the living room! I still can't believe a small mistake can cause this kind of break!
[QUOTE=pohtr;3898730]Are you still using ice & elevation for when it hurts? That's supposed to help a lot. It is evening now and both my feet are achy all over but not so much where the break is.....weird. Are you having to work or go to school?[/QUOTE]

Work have been kind to me. I've been given sick leave and when I asked to come back due to being bored and wanting to get out, they said no. They are worried about having me around. I know I can't handle stairs very well but they could stick me on the front desk and I'll be fine, but I can understand it's not good to have me around with crutches and a bad foot.

Where did your break happen? I think mine broke on the side of the foot but the ball under the small toe is hurting alot! If I've walked around, my foot hurts so much I need to stop walking til it's stop. Up the side of my foot, the bruise is very deep and painful and the bruise which runs up the foot til the other toes hurt too. I do wonder if I need to walk normally without the crutches or keep using them?
Are you sure you only had one break at the fifth metatarsal? Maybe you also had a torn tendon or sprain or something. Is your doctor a podiatrist? Maybe you could have another look at your x rays?

I'm the type that asks a lot of questions and I'm also having copies made for me of my x-rays. I also needed the Dr. to point out the break area and explain things. I think I make him a little crazy with all the questions, but I'm a good customer so he puts up with me (this is my third foot problem in a little over a year, broke a toe last summer).

I think your break was just worse than mine and at the very least you have a lot more bruising than I did. I have none of your pain by my baby toe. Mine is supposed to be a Jones fracture which my pod said was all about the location. The location of my break is at the ankle end of that bone where the bone begins to thicken. Is yours nearer to your baby toe?
[QUOTE=pohtr;3900244]Are you sure you only had one break at the fifth metatarsal? Maybe you also had a torn tendon or sprain or something. Is your doctor a podiatrist? Maybe you could have another look at your x rays?

I'm the type that asks a lot of questions and I'm also having copies made for me of my x-rays. I also needed the Dr. to point out the break area and explain things. I think I make him a little crazy with all the questions, but I'm a good customer so he puts up with me (this is my third foot problem in a little over a year, broke a toe last summer).

I think your break was just worse than mine and at the very least you have a lot more bruising than I did. I have none of your pain by my baby toe. Mine is supposed to be a Jones fracture which my pod said was all about the location. The location of my break is at the ankle end of that bone where the bone begins to thicken. Is yours nearer to your baby toe?[/QUOTE]

Well the last check up I had, the doctor pressed near the ankle bone and a little way up my foot. The worst bruising in at the side of my foot, the briuse is deep and painful. I think the pain near the small toe is the fact I am placing weight on the foot after weeks of not walking, so maybe it's just the reaction of that really. I guess I dont get the chance to ask questions due to the doctors being busy here. I wish I got an xray during the last check up, which I know it's what should have happened. I should have spoken up.

Another question, do you suffer from a freezing cold foot? My foot is cold as ice and it only warms up when walking, I now place my foot flat on the floor to get some warmth into it.
[QUOTE=pohtr;3911864]I definitely do not think you should push when you are still in pain. I've been cheating with not wearing my boot at home and then using the sandal and sometimes neither and at 6 weeks I'm starting to feel pain again at the break site. My Dr appointment is tomorrow and I just know I'm going to be in trouble.
So I recommend not overdoing it. (do what I say, NOT what I've been doing ;))[/QUOTE]

Had my check up today with xray. The bone is healing fine, but they want me to slowly move off the crutches and put full weigh on foot. He was worried about the swelling but I got to keep the foot up when not walking. I also keep using the boot til I can use a shoe. I was told off to not rubbing the bottom of my bad foot, when he did that....the pain was bad. He told to use the foot now and get my other bones and mucles working. So I've got 4 weeks before I go back, time to get walking!
I'm 11 weeks post 5th metatarsal break and seem to have healed fine. I walk with sneakers or crocks and the break area does not give me much trouble. I do however have a recurrance of swelling from last year's bunionectomies. I think surgeries of any kind are just unpredictable and different for everyone. It can be so discouraging at times. Hang in there, its supposed to get better with time.





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