December 9, 1968

The Two-Phalanged Fifth Toe

Author Affiliations

USAF USAF Hospital Elmendorf Anchorage, Alaska

JAMA. 1968;206(11):2526. doi:10.1001/jama.1968.03150110074029

To the Editor:  The presence of only two phalanges in the fifth toe is a more common variant than is generally appreciated. Asin reported an incidence of 48% in 417 patients studied by roentgenograms.1

Material and Methods:  The foot roentgenograms of 393 patients, 12 years of age or older, were reviewed.The i. majority of patients had roentgenograms obtained of only one foot. However, 26 patients were examined bilaterally. These patients were either normal bilaterally or had only two-phalanged fifth toes bilaterally except for three patients who had normal right fifth toes and two-phalanged left fifth toes. These three patients were not considered in either group.None of the patients had any generalized or localized bone anomalies, and the majority of the roentgenograms were obtained because of trauma.

Results:  There were 390 patients considered and 188 patients (48.2%) demonstrated only two phalanges in their fifth toes (Fig. 1). A