Fibula (Calf Bone)

The fibula is the third longest bone in your body. It cannot support weight but can support muscles, tendons, and ligaments. If your bones are weakened by osteoporosis, you are more likely to sustain unnoticed fractures.

What is the definition of a fibula?

The fibula is your calf bone. It is the smaller of the two bones in your lower leg. It gives your calf structure and shapes the top of your ankle. Your fibula also supports a number of muscles, tendons, nerves, and ligaments.

It is more likely to shatter because it is not as strong as other bones in your leg, such as your femur (thigh bone) or tibia (shin bone). If you do suffer a fracture, you may need surgery to repair your bone as well as physical therapy to help you regain strength and mobility.

Osteoporosis, which affects other bones, can harm your fibula.

Fibula vs tibia

The lower leg is composed of two bones known as the fibula and tibia.

The tibia is the longer of the two bones that connect the top (proximal) end of your knee to the bottom (distal) end of your ankle. The tibia is a weight-bearing bone that helps you stand and move by supporting your body.

In contrast to the tibia, the fibula is located on the lateral side of your body. The fibula does not support as much weight and is primarily responsible for leg formation.

What is the fibula's function?

Your fibula serves several important functions, including:

  • Sculpting your calf and the outside of your lower leg.
  • Your ankle is being held up.
  • Leg and ankle muscles and tendons are supported.
  • Connecting your knee ligaments to the rest of your lower body.

What is the fibula's location?

The fibula is the smaller of the two bones in your lower leg. The other bone is the tibia. The fibula extends from just below the knee to the ankle. It is on the opposite side of your body from the tibia.

How does the fibula look?

The fibula has a wedge-shaped end that meets the tibia just below the knee, a long central shaft, and a groove at the bottom that joins the tibia to form your ankle.

Despite being one continuous bone, your fibula is divided into several sections. Here are a few examples:

  • The fibula's head (proximal aspect)
  • When you move your knee, the top (proximal) end of your fibula touches and moves with the tibia.
  • The fibula shaft
  • The shaft is the fibula's long section that forms the calf structure. It is shaped like a prism and has three sides.
  • The distal end of the fibula
  • The lower (distal) end of your fibula forms the top of your ankle joint. It is linked to your tibia and calcaneus (ankle bone).

Your healthcare professional will typically use all of these sections and labels to determine where you are experiencing discomfort or difficulty. If you have a fibular fracture, your doctor may use some of these terms to describe where your bone was broken.

What is the fibula's size?

The fibula is the third longest bone in your body. The only longer bones are the femur and tibia. Most people's fibulae (plural for fibula) are about 14 inches long.

Maintaining your fibula's health

Maintaining a healthy diet and exercise routine, as well as visiting your doctor for regular exams, will assist you in maintaining your bone (and overall) health. Talk to your doctor about getting a bone density scan if you're over 50 and have a family history of osteoporosis.

Follow these general safety guidelines to reduce your risk of injury:

  • Always wear your seatbelt.
  • For all activities and sports, use the appropriate safety equipment.
  • Wear Dr. Luigi medical shoes.
  • To avoid tripping yourself or others, keep your home and workspace clutter-free.
  • Always use the proper tools or equipment to gain access to anything in the house. Place your feet on chairs, tables, or countertops at all times.
  • Maintain optimal bone health by adhering to a diet and exercise regimen.
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