Rheumatoid Arthritis of the Foot
Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic autoimmune condition that initially occurs in the small joints of the hands and feet. With rheumatoid arthritis, the body’s immune system attacks the body’s own tissues (such as bones, muscles, ligaments, and tendons) instead of foreign bodies. This disease causes an overactivity of the synovium, the lining around joints that provides lubrication to help bones move smoothly past each other. The synovium swells from the overactivity, becoming inflamed and causing damage to the joint and surrounding supportive tissues.
Symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis of the Foot
- Pain in the foot (commonly the ball of the foot, near the toes, but also may be in other areas of the foot and ankle)
- Swelling of the foot
- Joint stiffness in the foot
- Difficulty walking
- Appearance of deformities in the foot
- Rheumatoid nodules on the foot
- Symptoms usually appear in both feet
Cause of Rheumatoid Arthritis of the Foot
- The exact cause is unknown
- May be a condition provoked by a chemical or environmental “trigger”
Complications of Rheumatoid Arthritis of the Foot
- Weakened ligaments may lead to joint deformities (hammer toe, claw toe, bunions)
- Softening of the bone may lead to stress fractures and collapse of the bone
- Dislocated toe joints
- Flatfoot deformity
Things to do at home for Rheumatoid Arthritis in the Foot
- Wear custom orthotic devices and accommodative shoes
- Avoid or limit activities that increase pain
- Ice the most painful areas for 10minutes 3-4 times a day
- Lace-up ankle braces may help reduce pain by providing support to certain joints
Treatment of Rheumatoid Arthritis in the Foot
In order to relieve pain from arthritis in the shoulder, we address the problem holistically and naturally, without medication.
We use the following approaches to relieve Rheumatoid Arthritis symptoms in the foot:
- ASTR® Tools: Our doctors use a variety of ASTR® tools to release scar tissue and myofascial restriction, which can decrease mobility and flexibility.
- Special exercise program to decrease pain, strengthen the muscles, stabilize and help the patient to return to normal function and activities.
- Special instructions on how to speed up the recovery time.
- Cold Laser Therapy: Tissue inflammation is common with Rheumatoid Arthritis in the foot. Cold laser is used in order to decrease inflammation that causes pressure on the affected area.