Conditions & Services

Lisfranc Dislocations

The Lisfranc joint is where the metatarsal bones (long bones that extend to the toes) and the tarsal bones (bones in the arch) meet. The Lisfranc ligament is the tough connective tissue that joins the metatarsal and tarsal bones.

When injuries occur to the foot, dislocations of either the Lisfranc joint or sprains to the Lisfranc ligament can cause permanent damage if not properly treated. If you are in the Akron-Canton, Ohio area and think you have a injury to either your Lisfranc joint or ligament, please call us at Ohio Foot and Ankle Center for proper and prompt treatment.

What is it?

The following are types of Lisfranc injuries. They can sometimes happen all at once, depending on the injury:

  1. Sprains – Since the Lisfranc ligament and other ligaments on the bottom of the foot are typically stronger than those on the top of the foot, they are easily weakened when the ligament is stretched. Known as a sprain, this stretching of the ligament produces an instability in the midfoot.
  2. Fractures – Breaks (fractures) can either be an avulsion fracture or a complete fracture. Avulsion fractures occur when a piece of the bone is pulled off the from the main structure of the bone.
  3. Dislocations – With injury, the bones around the Lisfranc joint may be forced from their normal positions and cause difficulty in movement.


The symptoms of a Lisfranc injury may include:

  • Foot inflammation
  • Pain in the middle of the foot, particulary when standing or when pressure is applied
  • Inability to put weight on your foot (in severe injuries)
  • Bruising or blistering of the arch. Bruising can also occur on the top of the foot

Am I at risk?

Lisfranc joint injuries most often occur in car accident victims, military personnel, runners, contact sports players and anyone who leads a very active lifestyle. However, an injury can also happen with something as simple as missing a step while walking stairs.

How is a Lisfranc injury diagnosed?

To properly treat a Lisfranc injury, a definitive diagnosis is needed. Since Lisfranc injuries are sometimes mistaken for ankle sprains, the correct diagnosis is very important.

An examination of the foot, along with details of how the injury was sustained is important during the diagnostic stage. X-ray images may also be needed to make a proper diagnosis.

For more details on Lisfranc dislocations, visit the ACFAS informational website.