Sesamoid Fracture


Sesamoid Fracture

I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento Car Accident Lawyer. While much of the attention on foot fractures is given to the middle of the structure, the toes can also be broken and cause extensive pain.

What is a Sesamoid Fracture?

The sesamoid is a bone that plays an integral role in the function of the big toe. This toe is responsible for the vast majority of the balance of the foot, and therefore the body. It can be at risk of a traumatic injury in the event of an accident. If the sesamoid structure develops a bone fracture in the big toe, this is termed a sesamoid fracture.

Mechanism of Injury

There are many different ways that a patient could develop a sesamoid fracture. Activities where exceptional balance is needed is a common way of stressing the sesamoid to the point of breaking. If a person falls during sports activities such as lacrosse or football, the act of trying to balance before falling can lead to this type of fracture. A fracture of the sesamoid can also happen while walking on the road. A collision with a bicycle or another object could lead to a pedestrian injury when trying to balance before falling. These events can all cause a fracture of the sesamoid.

Treatment of a Sesamoid Fracture

While doctors are trying to diagnose a fracture of the sesamoid, the injured person they are treating will typically receive an x-ray to give the physician a better look at the bone. While this is often sufficent, some will get an MRI to look at the ligaments and tendons in the area as well. The injured person will need to have their toe immobilized, either with buddy taping or a cast, to allow the sesamoid to heal.

Possible Complications

A variety of comorbidities can develop from a fracture of the sesamoid. Depending on the severity of the fracture, injured parties may have problems walking on the foot even after the fracture has healed. Some patients can develop an infection of the foot if surgery is necessary.

Structures at Risk

If a person has suffered a fracture of the sesamoid, it is possible that the bone fragments could tear some of the ligaments and tendons in the area, including the ankle. The other bones such as the tarsal and metatarsal bones in the feet are also at risk.

Differential Diagnosis

All fractures of the foot have a wide differential diagnosis that must be run through, including:

Injury Prognosis

The prognosis for most sesamoid fractures is positive as the majority of people recover without incident unless there are other associated injuries.

Surgery is Rare

Surgery for a fracture of the sesamoid is typically reserved for patients whose fracture does not heal properly the first time around.


Sacramento Car Accident Lawyer, Ed Smith.

Sacramento Car Accident Lawyer

I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento Car Accident Lawyer. If you or someone close to you have been injured in an accident, please call me for free and friendly advice at (916) 921-6400 or (800) 404-5400. You can also reach me online via my website,

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Image Attribution: The Creative Commons 1.0, Universal Public Dedication Domain License has given permission to use this image found on Wikimedia Commons.
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