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Osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis (RA) are two types of arthritis that occur in the feet and ankles, with osteoarthritis being the most common. Osteoarthritis occurs when the cartilage between the bones begins to degenerate. The most common symptom of osteoarthritis is pain. Other symptoms include:

  • Joint stiffness
  • Swelling near joint
  • Difficulties walking

Many non-surgical treatments are available to relieve pain and help regain function. NSAIDs, like ibuprofen, walking casts, and steroid injections are helpful in reducing inflammation. Custom shoe inserts can aid in pain reduction and correct abnormal arches. Special exercises may be encouraged by a doctor to help regain strength and stability.

RA is a type of arthritis that has unknown origins. Environmental triggers or genetics are two suggestions for the cause of RA. During RA, cells of the immune system get confused and begin attacking healthy joints, causing a myriad of foot issues. Symptoms of RA include:

  • Rheumatoid nodules (lumps)
  • Pain and swelling
  • Difficulties walking

Custom shoe inserts and shoes can relieve pain and assist with walking. The use of steroid injections is a common practice for delivering an anti-inflammatory. Surgery to help with foot conditions that occur because of RA is a last resort.

Heartland Podiatry, PC
2406 South R.D. Mize Rd.  •  Independence, MO 64057  •  816-478-3338
1161 SE Oldham Parkway  •  Lee’s Summit, MO 64081  •  816-478-3338