What is Lisfranc’s injury?

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Lisfranc’s injury is basically a dislocation or fracture in the mid-foot area. It is important to note that this injury should not be missed out during the initial assessment since it can result to long-term damage that can be debilitating.


The symptoms of Lisfranc’s injury typically include pain in the mid-foot area that is accompanied by difficulty in putting any weight on the foot. There might be a certain degree of bone deformity but this is not always the case.

Swelling is likely to occur on the top part of the foot and there is tenderness over the joint area. It is important to note that the pain is intensified when pushing up onto the toes or performing a calf raise exercise.

Lisfranc's injury
The symptoms of Lisfranc’s injury typically include pain in the mid-foot area that is accompanied by difficulty in putting any weight on the foot.

Overview on Lisfranc’s injury

The Lisfranc’s joint refers to the tarsometatarsal joints where the short tarsal bones in the mid-foot meet with the metatarsals in the foot. When it comes to Lisfranc’s fracture, it rarely occurs in sports, but if not treated, it will lead to severe consequences. The most common cause of this injury is stepping into a small fire which causes a strong twisting force with a lot of body weight on top. This can also occur during vehicular accidents.

Lisfranc’s ligament connects the medial cuneiform bone to the base of the 2nd metatarsal. It is important to note that this injury is comprised of a dislocation where there is only ligament damage or a fracture to one of the two bones can also occur.


Once an individual is suspected with a Lisfranc’s injury or even a mid-tarsal joint sprain, it is best to seek medical care right away. If treatment is delayed, it can result to lasting or permanent damage. To learn to recognize and manage bone and muscle injuries, register for first aid training today.

In most cases, the doctor will take an X-ray of the affected foot while in a weight-bearing position. Nevertheless, this injury is often overlooked even with an X-ray. If the doctor suspects a Lisfranc’s injury and not revealed in an X-ray, a bone scan or MRI are carried out in order to confirm a diagnosis.

Once a Lisfranc’s injury is confirmed, a plaster cast with a toe plate extending beneath the toe is applied beneath the knee in order to immobilize the joint. Oftentimes, the bones would require fixing with the use of wires or pins.

The treatment usually depends on the severity of the injury. The exact anatomical reduction of the bones is required. If this is the case, a cast is usually applied and worn for a span of 4-6 weeks. After this period, general foot and lower leg rehabilitation exercises should be done in order to restore strength, mobility and proprioception.

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