Jones Fracture

Jones fracture

Jones fracture is a fracture of the 5th metatarsal bone on the outside of the foot. It occurs through overuse, or following a severe ankle sprain.


Medically reviewed by Dr Chaminda Goonetilleke, 20th Jan. 2022

Signs & symptoms

Breaking any bone is painful. Symptoms of a Jones fracture are:

  • Sudden pain at the base of the 5th metatarsal. This is the long bone on the outside of your foot.
  • There will be tenderness at the point of injury on the outside of the foot.
  • You will be unable to bear weight on the foot.
  • Your foot may also appear deformed.
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An X-ray helps diagnose a Jones fracture.

Jones fracture x-ray


Jones fractures occur following severe ankle sprains or overuse.

Ankle sprains

Severe inversion ankle sprains may cause a Jones fracture. When your ankle rolls over (inverts) the sole of your foot faces inwards. This results in stress on the 5th metatarsal causing the bone to break.

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It may also result from overuse, especially repetitive impact on the outer foot. Over time bone stress injury occurs.

Treatment for Jones fracture

Jones fractures are first identified with diagnostic X-rays


Initial treatment usually means the patient has to wear a cast for 6-8 weeks. This immobilizes the foot and prevents weight-bearing activity. If the fracture fails to heal during this time then surgery is indicated.

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Jones fracture surgery

Surgery for a Jones fracture of the foot involves placing plates and screws in the bones to hold them in place while they heal. Often Surgeons prefer to place a screw in the bones to hold them in place immediately rather than wait.

Return to sport is shown to be quicker with this method of surgery (around 2 to 4 weeks). However, this does make it more likely the individual will re-fracture the bone.

The time taken to return to full training after a surgical fixation operation is around 8 weeks, although it is recommended for full healing to be seen on a radiographic image before full training is resumed.

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