The lesser metatarsal heads are located at the base of the lesser toes and form the proximal aspect of the metatarsophalangeal joints of the lesser toes. They can be identified more readily with extension and flexion of the lesser toes, which helps identify the metatarsophalangeal joints.


Thickened skin develops on the plantar aspect of the foot at the heads of each lesser metatarsal as these are areas of weight bearing.

Tenderness over the head of the fifth metatarsal is most often due to a bunionette (tailor’s bunion) in which there is bone deposition at the head of the fifth metatarsal and swelling of the overlying soft tissue.

Splay foot is a term used to describe a foot that exhibits significant metatarsal head separation with weight bearing