Dallas Cowboy’s receiver, Dez Bryant underwent surgery Monday, September 14th, for repair of a 5th metatarsal fracture to his right foot.
Bryant sustained the injury during the fourth quarter of Sunday’s win against the Giants as reported by ESPN. After surgery Monday night, Dez tweeted that surgery “went great”. There has been discussion on how long Bryant will be out of football until the bone heals.
There are several common fracture patterns that happen in the fifth metatarsal. The typical fracture will heal in around 4-6 weeks. Several sources have reported a Jones fracture. If Dez Bryant has a Jones fracture, it can take longer to heal due to poor blood supply in this area of the 5th metatarsal bone. To learn more about fractures and factors in bone healing read more here.
On Sunday NFL reporter Ian Rapaport wrote that Dez Bryant needed a bone graft during his surgery to repair a Jones fracture to his right fifth metatarsal. The increased healing time of 10-12 weeks due to the bone graft as reported in the article may not be fully accurate. If the surgeon used bone graft substitute, a synthetic graft, to help heal the Jones fracture, Bryant could return sooner than reported.
NBA star, Kevin Durant, suffered a Jones fracture in October 2014 before the NBA season started. He returned 7 weeks after surgery which ended up being premature because the fracture was not fully healed. Durant suffered foot discomfort upon his return and in the spring of 2015, he needed 2 additional surgeries which caused Durant to miss the rest of the NBA season. While Durant’s case is rare, Dez Bryant should only return to football when the fracture is fully healed to prevent further problems.
NBC Sports interviewed former NFL athletic trainer Mike Ryan who stated that Dez Bryant will undergo multiple CT scans to monitor bone healing as he recovers. We do know that Bryant will be out for a minimum of 4-6 weeks. We typically perform x-rays after surgery at 4 weeks. In elite athletes, CT scans can better show bone healing.