Anatomic Description of the Fourth and Fifth Tarsometatarsal Articulation: A Cadaveric Study

Dominick J. Casciato, Sara Yancovitz, Rona Law, John Thompson, Ian Barron, Christopher Hyer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The fourth and fifth tarsometatarsal joint, consisting of the fourth and fifth metatarsal and the cuboid, imparts a significant amount of motion to the foot during ambulation. Injury to this joint complex, through chronic deformation or acute trauma, often necessitates arthroplasty, arthrodesis, or fusion. Currently, there exists no studies that investigate the anatomy of this articulation. The purpose of this study is to describe the medial and lateral anterior cuboid articulations which allows for surgical planning and the advancement of hardware design. Twenty fresh-frozen below-the-knee cadaver legs were thawed and the cuboids were excised. The width and height of the entire joint complex were measured as the longest span across the total articular surface of the anterior cuboid. The width and height of each articular facet were recorded as the span across the geometric bisection of each individual surface. The mean anterior cuboid articulation width and height was 25.62 mm and 16.74 mm, respectively. The mean medial cuboid articulation width and height was 11.7mm and 13.65 mm, respectively. The mean lateral cuboid width and height was 16.74 mm and 12.78 mm, respectively. The medial articulation maintained a larger mean height and narrower mean width than the lateral facet (p < .05). The unique anatomy of the lateral tarsometatarsal joint complex plays an important functional role and requires attention when deciding between arthrodesis or arthroplasty. Increasing the understanding of the clinical anatomy of this joint will better prepare surgeons and product designers to anticipate hardware needs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1149-1151
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of Foot and Ankle Surgery
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • 5
  • arthroplasty
  • fusion
  • lateral column
  • midfoot
  • osteology
  • tarsometatarsal

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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