foot and ankle blog

December 9, 2008

Metatarsal phalangeal joint replacement – how successful is it?

Filed under: Foot and ankle surgery, Foot and ankle trauma — Tags: , — Jeffrey Oster, DPM @ 11:23 pm

I can’t recall the last metatarsal phalangeal joint (mpj) replacement that I’ve done in the past 25 years, but as the winds of fate blew…I had two this week. One was for a likely Freiberg’s infraction of the 3rd mpj and the other was post traumatic degeneration of the 2nd mpj following surgery.

Does implant arthroplasty work well for these cases? I can’t say that I really know. I have such a limited case load to be able to draw from. The basic premise though is to preserve the weight bearing surface of the metatarsal while creating a pain free joint.

The Freiberg’s case was really in need of repair. Upon entering the joint, a large loose fragment of bone and cartilage came loose.

We’ll have to see how these folks do over time. At their first post-op visit, I was very impressed with the lack of pain that they had. X-ray findings were good in both cases.

I reckon you’ll just have to stay tuned…

Jeffrey A. Oster, DPM
Medical Director



  1. I was dignosed with Freiberg’s infraction in my 2nd mpj when i was 11 years old. I had to wear a camwalker for 6 weeks. I am now 18 and i have not had much trouble with it since. But this past week iv been having the same symptoms in one of my fingers. Is it possible to have Freiberg’s in your fingers?

    Comment by Cylie — February 10, 2009 @ 1:15 am

    • Hey Cylie,

      A better place for this conversation is going to be our forum, The Foot Talk Forum. When you get there, but sure to search for other posts for Freiberg’s infraction. And then we can talk a bit.

      The reason to send you to the forum is two fold. First, there’s a wealth of information there. Second, my medical malpractice coverage only applies to the forum, so I’m forced to direct all clinical conversations there.

      Thanks for understanding.


      Comment by Jeffrey Oster, DPM — February 10, 2009 @ 1:35 am

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