The word arthritis is used to describe over 100 different conditions that can impact your joints and their surrounding tissues, with more than 50 million people in the United States, or at least 20% of all adults, suffering from a form of the disease. If you have arthritis pain that impacts your ability to walk with ease, Nina Coletta, DPM, PA, in Plantation, Florida, provides comprehensive care for patients with arthritis of the foot and ankle. For expert care from one of the leading podiatrists in Broward County, call Dr. Coletta’s office or schedule an appointment using online booking today.
Arthritis is a broad term given to a range of conditions that reduce, impair, or destroy normal joint function. Although arthritis can affect any joint in your body, it’s especially prevalent in weight-bearing joints, including your hips, knees, ankles, and feet.
Arthritis of the foot/ankle complex is so common that experts believe it affects at least half of all adults over age 60.
If you have arthritis in your feet or ankles, it’s probably one of the following types:
Osteoarthritis often referred to as “wear and tear” arthritis or degenerative joint disease is by far the most common type of arthritis. It occurs when the smooth cartilage that cushions the ends of your bones progressively breaks down, causing inflammation, irregular motion within the joint, and bone spurs.
Although osteoarthritis is most common in older adults, it can also develop in younger people following a traumatic injury, such as a dislocation or a bone fracture. This type of osteoarthritis can become classified as post-traumatic osteoarthritis.
Rheumatoid Arthritis, the second most common type of arthritis, is a chronic autoimmune inflammatory disease that causes your immune system to attack your synovial membrane, the tissue that helps lubricate your joints for smooth, fluid movement.
As these tissues swell, the affected joint may feel stiff, painful, or swollen. Rheumatoid arthritis is a symmetrical disease, meaning that if it affects one of your feet, it’s likely to change the other one too. People who have had rheumatoid arthritis for at least ten years almost always develop arthritis somewhere in their feet or ankles.
Gout is a form of arthritis that occurs when too much uric acid builds up in your body. You produce uric acid when your body breaks down purines, or substances that occur naturally in both your body and the food you eat. When your kidneys don’t flush uric acid properly from your body, it can form sharp crystals that cause intense joint pain and inflammation.
Although gout can affect any joint, it’s most common in the big toe. It also tends to occur in the ankle, elbow, wrist, and finger joints. Gout can be incredibly painful, causing severe swelling, discoloration, and extreme tenderness.
When you have arthritis that affects your feet and ankles, it’s important to take whatever steps you can to manage your condition. Besides helping alleviate your pain, proper care from Dr. Coletta can also keep you from developing the kind of joint deformity that makes it difficult to walk.
Although the personal treatment regimen Dr. Coletta develops for you depends on the type of arthritis you have as well as your overall condition, arthritis care generally includes:
To learn more, call or use online booking to schedule an appointment today.