Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) – Foot
What is it?
Rheumatoid Arthritis a chronic (long term), progressive auto-immune disease (a disease whereby the body’s cells are attacked by its own immune system causing damage). It causes swelling and damage to cartilage and bone around joints. Over time this leads to deformities of the affected joints. The exact cause(s) of RA are not yet fully understood. Osteoarthritis may also be present in conjunction with RA.
Individuals with RA may have swollen joints which may be hot and/or painful to touch. Joints may be stiff, particularly in the morning. In certain cases, due to pressure under the foot or deformity there may be foot ulcers.
The effects of RA cannot be reversed but the aim of orthotic intervention is to reduce symptoms associated with increased pressures/pain resulting from joint deformity. This may be achieved with an appropriate combination of:
• Rocker sole adaptations