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Fifth Metatarsal Bone
Skeletal System

Fifth Metatarsal Bone

Os quintum metatarsi

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Quick Facts

Location: Foot.

Bone Type: Long bone.

Key Features: Head, body, base, medial and lateral surfaces, and proximal and distal articular facets.

Articulates With: Cuboid bone, fourth metatarsal bone, proximal phalanx of little toe.

Arterial Supply: Plantar and dorsal metatarsal arteries.

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Key Features & Anatomical Relations

The fifth metatarsal bone is one of the five metatarsal bones of the foot. It is classified as a long bone and includes the following bony features:

- parts: head, body and base;

- surfaces: medial and lateral surfaces;

- landmarks: tuberosity, proximal and distal articular facets, and fourth metatarsal articular facet.

More information regarding these bony features can be found in the Parts, Surfaces, and Landmarks tabs for this bone.

The fifth metatarsal bone is located:

- proximal to the proximal phalanx of little toe;

- distal to the cuboid bone;

- lateral to the fourth metatarsal bone.

The fifth metatarsal bone articulates with the:

- proximal phalanx of little toe at the fifth metatarsophalangeal joint;

- cuboid bone, contributing to the formation of the tarsometatarsal joints;

- fourth metatarsal bone, contributing to the formation of the intermetatarsal joints.


Ossification of the fifth metatarsal bone occurs at three ossification centers, these are found in the:

- base;

- body, which appears in utero at third month;

- head, which appears during the second to fourth years.

The ossification centers for the body and head fuse with each other during the 17th and 20th years, while the base fuses with the body earlier (Standring, 2016).


In some individuals, an accessory bone, known as the os vesalianum pedis, may be associated with the fifth metatarsal bone (Standring, 2016).

Surface Anatomy

The following bony features of the fifth metatarsal bone are relevant to surface anatomy:

- its dorsolateral aspect can be palpated;

- the head is palpable during plantarflexion of the toes;

- the tuberosity is easily located along the lateral border of the foot.

List of Clinical Correlates

- Fracture

- Lisfranc injury

- Brachymetatarsia

- Neuropathic (diabetic) foot ulcer of the metatarsal head

- Iselin disease


Standring, S. (2016) Gray's Anatomy: The Anatomical Basis of Clinical Practice. Gray's Anatomy Series 41st edn.: Elsevier Limited.

Learn more about this topic from other Elsevier products

Metatarsal Bone

ScienceDirect image

The heads of the metatarsal bones are connected by the deep transverse ligament that, along with the interosseous ligaments, helps maintain the transverse arch of the foot.

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Complete Anatomy