Melbourne Podiatry Clinic

Can Podiatrists help with Arthritis?

Arthritis is a common condition that affects millions of people worldwide. It can cause joint pain, stiffness, and swelling, making it difficult to carry out daily activities. While arthritis is often associated with aging, it can affect people of all ages, including children. There are many treatments available for arthritis, including medications, manual therapy, and surgery. However, podiatrists can also play an essential role in managing arthritis symptoms and improving the quality of life for those with the condition.

As podiatrists, we are medical professionals who specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of conditionsrelated to the foot and ankle. We can help people with arthritis by assessing their condition and providing advice on how to manage their symptoms. 

Here are some ways that we can help people with arthritis:

Assessing the Extent of the Condition: 

Podiatrists can perform a comprehensive evaluation of the feet and ankles to determine the extent of the arthritis. We may use diagnostic tools like X-rays, MRIs, or CT scans to assess the severity of the condition. This information can help us develop a personalised treatment plan for the patient.

Recommending Footwear: 

Choosing the right footwear is essential for people with arthritis. We will recommend shoes that provide adequate support and cushioning for your feet. They may also recommend custom orthotics that can help redistribute pressure and reduce pain in the affected joints.

Providing Pain Management: 

Podiatrists can provide pain management techniques for those with arthritis. We use manual therapy, such as joint mobilisation, stretching and strengthening exercises, to reduce pain and improve mobility. Additionally, we can recommend chatting to your GP about medications or corticosteroid injections to alleviate pain and inflammation in the affected joints.

Recommending Lifestyle Changes: 

We will also recommend lifestyle changes that can help you manage your arthritis symptoms. Sometimes weight loss or dietary changes can be important to reduce the load on the joints. Additionally, they may recommend activities like swimming or cycling that are low-impact and can help maintain mobility.

Surgery: 

In some cases, surgery may be necessary to treat severe arthritis. Podiatrists can refer for surgical procedures, such as joint replacement or fusion, to alleviate pain and restore function in the affected joints.

As podiatrists, we play a crucial role in helping people with arthritis manage their symptoms and improve their quality of life. By assessing the extent of the condition, recommending footwear, providing pain management, recommending lifestyle changes, and referring for surgery if necessary, podiatrists can help people with arthritis regain their mobility and independence. 

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