Effect of Rheumatoid Arthritis on the Feet
Rheumatoid Arthritis is a condition which comes to the fore when the immune system attacks the joint lining tissue. This causes stiffness along with painful inflammation. Interestingly, nearly 1.3 million people in the USA suffer from this illness. It is important to note that RA affects the hands and the feet. However, at the same time, it can also affect the ankles badly. The condition usually impacts on smaller joints first. After that, it may move to larger joints such as the ankles. So, let’s take a close peek at how RA gives rise to arthritic feet in individuals.
How does RA give rise to arthritic foot pain?
The symptoms of RA are commonly known as flares. It is because they tend to come and go in cycles. The victims may notice their symptoms are worse in the morning when compared to night. As it does in other body joints, RA can cause inflammation and stiffness in the ankle joints. This can also give rise to permanent changes in the shape of the joints. Note that the ankle joint comprises of two smaller joints which usually act as a hinge to move the joint. For instance, movements such as running and striding are dependent entirely on the proper functioning of ankle joints.
The areas on which RA has a bad impact
Remember that the bones in the ankle joint contain cartilage which safeguards them from rubbing against each other. RA causes this to break down over time which in turn increases the friction of the bone. Moreover, the friction between bones can give rise to severe inflammation around the ankle joint. This causes the feet to become weak and unable to support the joint fully. Here is the list of symptoms associated with RA commonly experienced by patients.
- The front ball of the foot
- Pain in the Achilles tendon with the appearance of nodules
- The middle of the foot and bones below the ankle
- The toes
The feeling rendered by RA in the ankles
It is important here to note that the main symptom of RA in the ankle joint is inflammation. It makes the joint swollen, stiff and painful. This can also restrict the mobility of the joint thereby impairing the ability of a person to stand and walk. In the earlier stages, the symptoms may be mild and not that frequent. However, with the passage of time, inflammation can become worse. This is the reason that it is always wise to opt for arthritic foot surgery. This helps remove joint pain and increases the mobility of an individual.
How physiotherapy is helpful in curing RA?
Physical therapy is certainly needed to restore the normal body functioning. By using certain techniques and treatments, the physical therapist brings about relief. You may be prescribed certain medication and exercises in the process. To stay healthy and fine, you may take up health checkup packages. Regular checkups are required to keep the diseases at bay. If any underlying condition is at the latent state, it may be treated before it gets severe.
You may be asked to change the eating habit or give up certain habits during the treatment process. The most common kind of therapy is the massage therapy used by the therapist. It can ease pain, discomfort and inflammation associated with the joint region. Massage is the part of general therapy and is non-invasive.