Lisfranc fracture

A Lisfranc fracture arises if there are either ripped ligaments or broken bones in the midfoot section of one or both foot.

The midfoot includes the Lisfranc joint and ligament, where both can be damaged. As a common foot injury, it ranges from minor to severe based on how the injury happened.

What are the indications?

The signs of a Lisfranc fracture is based on the seriousness of the injury.

The usual symptoms include:

  • Swelling and tenderness at the site of damage
    Lisfranc fracture

    The midfoot includes the Lisfranc joint and ligament, where both can be damaged.

  • Pain that worsens while standing or walking
  • Bruising might be present on both the top and base of the foot

Remember that bruising which occurs on the base of the foot is a distinctive feature of a Lisfranc fracture.

Management of a Lisfranc fracture

The treatment for a Lisfranc fracture is based on the seriousness of damage.

For a mild injury, it is often managed in the same manner as a simple sprain with application of ice, rest and elevation of the affected foot. Crutches might also be suggested by the doctor to help with the discomfort that arises while standing or walking.

For a severe injury, the individual should use a cast for up to 6 weeks. The doctor will monitor the condition of the individual with an X-ray for any improvement and if surgery is required.

If surgery is necessary, internal fixation is performed where the foot bones are repositioned and secured in place with screws or plates to promote healing. In some cases, fusion is performed where the cartilage bordering the joint is removed before screws are added.

What is the outlook?

A Lisfranc fracture is often managed with adequate rest, cast or surgery. Nevertheless, those who experienced the injury are likely to end up with arthritis or chronic pain.

Quick Note / Disclaimer

The material posted on this page on a Lisfranc fracture is for learning and educational purposes only. To learn to recognize the signs of injury and how it is treated, register for a first aid and CPR course with Vancouver First Aid.

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