Imaging tests, such as X-rays , magnetic resonance imaging MRI and computerized tomography CT scans , allow doctors to observe and assess the extent and location of damage in the feet and ankles. A primary care doctor typically provides a referral to a specialist physician called a rheumatologist for a rheumatoid arthritis diagnosis. You and your doctor can control and manage rheumatoid arthritis in many ways.
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Medications such as steroids and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs help patients manage pain and inflammation. Surgery can correct the pain and discomfort caused by joint deformities. Request an appointment online. Skip to main content.
Rheumatoid Arthritis in Foot | Advanced Foot & Ankle Specialists
Arthritis and Rheumatoid Arthritis of the Foot and Ankle. Other signs and symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis include: Tenderness in both feet and ankles Joint deformities, such as hammertoe or claw toe Damage to the synovium, the lining of the joints that lubricates and facilitates joint movement Joint softening in the ankles and feet The presence of stress fractures in the ankle and foot bones. Other causes and risk factors include: Exposure to chemical environmental factors that may cause inflammation A genetic predisposition for rheumatoid arthritis A family history of rheumatoid arthritis.
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Diagnosis Tests and Diagnosis of Arthritis and Rheumatoid Arthritis of the Foot and Ankle A doctor first performs a physical exam and evaluates medical history to determine whether rheumatoid arthritis is present. Treatment Treatment and Care for Arthritis and Rheumatoid Arthritis of the Foot and Ankle You and your doctor can control and manage rheumatoid arthritis in many ways.
How your feet work
Other methods used to treat or manage rheumatoid arthritis include: Weight management Nutritional supplements Pads, inserts, and arch supports for the feet and ankles Canes or braces that reduce pressure on the joints while walking or moving Physical therapy to strengthen the muscles around the damaged joints. Your foot and ankle specialist will recommend foot surgery if non-surgical options have proven unsuccessful, or if you have extensive cartilage damage.
Surgical treatment typically involves a surgical procedure called fusion, during which two bones that form a joint are fused together to create one bone. During the healing process, a new bone will grow between the two fused joint bones. This surgery limits joint motion, which reduces the pain caused by rheumatoid arthritis.
It is particularly effective for the ankle joint, as that tends to be the most painful joint when affected by arthritis. Your email address will not be published. Symptoms The primary symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis in the foot or ankle are pain, swelling, inflammation, and stiffness of the joint.
Rheumatoid arthritis of the foot and ankle can be a debilitating problem, particularly for patients who have undergone successful hip or knee arthroplasty. Optimal medical management, use of orthotic devices, and surgical intervention are essential components of patient care. Forefoot involvement with hallux valgus and lesser metatarsophalangeal joint subluxation and dislocation are the most common findings.
Reconstruction usually requires lesser metatarsophalangeal joint excisional arthroplasty and first metatarsophalangeal joint arthrodesis. Midfoot tarsometatarsal and intertarsal involvement is treated with orthotic devices and intertarsal fusion for advanced arthropathy.
Hindfoot involvement frequently leads to pes planovalgus deformity, which may require isolated talonavicular arthrodesis if treated early or triple arthrodesis for advanced destruction. Ankle involvement is less frequent; when it is unresponsive to conservative measures, ankle symptoms may be improved by arthrodesis. Although great advances have been made in medical and surgical management of rheumatoid arthritis, the disease remains a serious problem.
Foot and Ankle Pain Due to Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)
Through prudent use of medical management, orthotic devices, and other conservative measures as well as surgical intervention, long-term function can be enhanced greatly. Abdo is in private practice with Orthopaedic Specialties, Clearwater, Fla.
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