Learn more about arthritis and how to properly treat arthritic feet and ankles.
Has your Bronx podiatrist Dr. Barry Finkelstein told you that you have arthritis in your feet and ankles? If so, find out more about arthritis and what you can do to get pain-free feet.
Q. What is arthritis?
A. Arthritis is an overarching term that covers over 100 diseases that cause joint inflammation. Those with arthritis experience inflammation and swelling around the joints and soft tissue, which can cause pain and joint stiffness.
Q. What is the most common type of arthritis?
A. Osteoarthritis is one of the most common types of arthritis, which is usually age-related. Those with osteoarthritis will experience joint inflammation and degradation of the cartilage. This condition usually comes about gradually, so it’s important to see your Bronx, NY podiatrist once you start to notice symptoms of arthritis.
Q. What are the symptoms of arthritis in the foot and ankle?
A. Arthritis in the foot and ankle will cause stiffness, swelling, pain and tenderness around the affected joint. It can also make it difficult to walk or put weight on your feet.
Q. How is foot and ankle arthritis diagnosed?
A. Your Bronx, NY podiatrist will be able to diagnose whether your symptoms are indicative of arthritis by performing a thorough physical examination and a series of imaging tests such as X-rays and an MRI or CT scan. We will also discuss your symptoms and medical history.
Q. What are some conservative treatments for managing arthritis in the foot and ankle?
A. If you are experiencing only minor symptoms, you may find relief from taking over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications and pain relievers like ibuprofen. This can help reduce both pain and swelling. If you are experiencing more severe pain, talk to your Bronx podiatrist about prescription-strength pain relievers and steroid injections, which can more aggressively target your symptoms.
You can also opt for custom-made orthotics from your Bronx podiatrist, which can help take pressure off certain areas of the foot and ankle and increase support. You may also benefit from wearing a brace.
Also, see your Bronx podiatrist for physical therapy, so you can learn effective stretching and strengthening exercises that you can perform daily from the comfort of your home.
Q. What are some tips for caring for feet and ankles that have arthritis?
Proper foot care is essential for reducing your arthritis symptoms. The most important aspect is wearing the best shoes for your arthritic feet. Find shoes that offer flexibility, rubber soles, support and give your toes room to move. Ask your Bronx podiatrist for shoe recommendations.
Q. Will I need surgery for my foot and ankle arthritis?
A. If you don’t find relief from your symptoms, or your arthritis is severe, then surgery may be a last resort. There are several types of surgeries available (e.g. fusion; joint replacement) and the kind of surgery will depend on the severity of your arthritis.
If you are experiencing any symptoms of arthritis in your feet or ankles then it’s time to contact us. Call NYNJ Foot and Ankle Associates today!