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What is arthritis?

Arthritis is a general term for a group of more than 100 diseases. It can involve inflammation and swelling in and around your joints and the nearby soft tissue.


With many kinds of arthritis, your joints wear down over time. You slowly lose the smooth "cushioning" cartilage inside them. As a result, your bones rub and wear against each other. Soft tissues in your joints also may begin to wear down. After some time, the joint might not work or move the way it should.

Several types of arthritis can cause pain in your feet and ankles, including:

  1. Osteoarthritis: causes changes over longer period of time

  2. Rheumatoid Arthritis: autoimmune disease causing immune system to attack the joint

  3. Gout: caused by buildup of uric acid due to diet

  4. Post-traumatic Arthritis: happens after an injury, such as dislocation or bone fracture

Symptoms of Foot & ankle arthritis

Common symptoms you may experience inlcude:

  • Tenderness when you touch the joint

  • Pain when you move it

  • Trouble moving, walking, or putting weight on it

  • Joint stiffness, warmth, or swelling

  • More pain and swelling after you rest, such as sitting or sleeping

Treatment of foot & Ankle arthritis

Depending on your symptoms and what’s causing your arthritis, you might have one or more of these treatments:

  • Steroid medications injected into your joints

  • Anti-inflammatory drugs to help with swelling

  • Pain relievers

  • Pads or arch supports in your shoes

  • Canes or braces for support

  • Shoe inserts that support your ankle and foot (orthotics)

  • Physical therapy

  • Custom-fitted shoes

  • Surgical options

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