|JOINTS IN THE ARCH OF THE FOOT
||The joints in the arch of the foot
adapt the foot to the ground surface. As a result they work
very hard and can wear out - developing painful arthritis.
|SYMPTOMS OF ARTHRITIS
||Arthritis of these joints often goes unnoticed
until it has become quite advanced. There are many types of
arthritis but osteoarthritis is the most common
type to affect these joints. Early symptoms can include “aches”
within the joints often occurring after activity. In later stages
there may be persistent swelling around the
joint or hard lumps around the edge of the
joints.In some patients these lumps (called “osteophytes”)
are the cause of additional symptoms because they cause pressure
on adjacent soft tissue structures.
||Your consultant will be able to make a provisional
diagnosis based up careful examination of the joints together
with your history of symptoms. Further investigations with x-rays
and more advanced scans such as MRI or CT can be necessary when
assessing the foot due to the complex anatomy of this area.
Generally osteoarthritis is progressive (gets worse with time).
In the foot however it is believed that bracing and splinting
may help protect painful arthritic joints. Such measure may
help the local symptoms but also aid in protecting the joints
from increased damage. It is not possible to “undo”
damage caused by osteoarthritis.
|| Simple analgesics and anti-inflammatories
Joint injections using cortisone
Foot orthoses / bracing
Surgery to “clean-up the joints”
Surgery to fuse joints which are very badly arthritic