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Arthritis is term to describe a range of conditions that affect the joint in your body. Arthritis can occur in one joint or it can occur in many joints. Moreover, it can affect the big joints of the body such as the knee or it can affect the small joints such as in the foot. Arthritis is often classified into two basic categories, which are inflammatory and non-inflammatory arthritis. As arthritis can affect the foot and ankle, it can often lead to difficulty walking and conducting various activities overall reducing your quality of life.

Types of Arthritis


  Osteoarthritis Rheumatoid Post-traumatic Gout
  • Degenerative wear and tear.
  • Usually affects 1 joint initially.
  • Damages the cartillage causing bone rubbing on bone.
  • Autoimmune disease where our antibodies attack the synovium (thin lining around the joints).
  • Cause damage to the bone, cartillage, ligaments and tendons.
  • Arthritis occuring following injury to the area. Such as dislocation and fractures.
  • Wear and tear of the cartilage over time.
    • Deposition of monosodium urate crystals due breakdown of a substance called Purine, which is naturally found in the body.


Risk Factors
  • Obesity
  • Age
  • Family history
  • Diabetes
  • Genetics
  • Infection
  • Family history
  • Smoking
  • Obesity
  • Trauma, fractures, dislocation
  • Diet
  • Obesity
  • Certain medications (diurectics, low dose aspirin)
  • Family history
  • Trauma
  • Painful joints.
  • Slow developing.
  • Stiffness of the joints.
  • Asymetrical joints affected.
  • Restricted motion
  • Painful joints
  • Significant deformity
  • Symmetrical joints affected
  • Heat and swelling present around the joints.
  • Restricted motion.
  • Painful joints
  • Restricted motion
  • Stiffness in the joints
  • Intense pain of the joint
  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Restricted motion

Imaging and tests for Arthritis

X-rays can provide information about your bones and the alignment of the bones. If arthritis is present, X-rays may show joint space narrowing, fractures, osteophyte formation and changes in the alignment of the joints.

Blood tests can show any inflammatory markers that can help diagnosis between different types of arthritis.

Other types of medical imaging, such as bone scans, CT scans and MRI imaging can be used to determine more details about bone and joint changes.

Treatment for Arthritis 

Arthritis cannot be cured but there are treatment options to help relieve pain and discomfort, as well as to improve mobility

Conservative treatment for arthritis includes:

  • The use of medications to reduce the inflammation and/or pain in the joints.
  • Medicines that specifically target inflammatory arthritis can slow down or in some cases, halt the progression of the condition.
  • Reducing or modifying activities that aggravate the condition and your discomfort
  • Performing non-weight bearing exercises such as swimming or cycling to increase strength and support your joints, as well as increasing range of motion.
  • Losing weight and maintaining a good diet.
  • Orthotics to assist with the pain, deformity and functional problems related to the joints
  • Other assistive devices such as braces and ankle foot orthoses

Surgical treatment:

If arthritis leads to significant disability then surgical options can be considered. The surgical treatment is dependent on the arthritis and the location of the disability. Your podiatric surgeon can explain your options.

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