Tuesday, 16 January 2024 00:00

Is It Gout or Rheumatoid Arthritis?

There are many types of arthritis, with rheumatoid arthritis, or RA, and gout being two distinct but often confused members of this family. While both inflict pain and inflammation upon the joints, the origins and treatment strategies for each differ significantly. Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune inflammatory condition that arises when the immune system mistakenly targets healthy cells in the synovial tissues. This results in pain, swelling, and inflammation. RA can affect ankle joints on both sides of the body and can lead to irreversible joint damage over time. Gout, while also inflammatory, is not autoimmune in nature. It develops from elevated levels of uric acid in the bloodstream. Uric acid, found in certain foods and drinks, as well as influenced by specific medications, forms crystals that deposit in synovial tissues, particularly in the feet, and especially in the big toe. Unfortunately, studies show that some patients with RA also have gout. Obesity is thought to be a link between the two conditions in some cases, as it is a shared risk factor. An accurate diagnosis is paramount for effective treatment. A podiatrist can conduct a series of tests to determine whether your joint pain comes from RA, gout, or both. For help, it is suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist.

Arthritis can be a difficult condition to live with. If you are seeking treatment, contact the foot specialists from Table Mountain Foot and Ankle. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Arthritic Foot Care  

Arthritis is a joint disorder that involves the inflammation of different joints in your body, such as those in your feet. Arthritis is often caused by a degenerative joint disease and causes mild to severe pain in all affected areas. In addition to this, swelling and stiffness in the affected joints can also be a common symptom of arthritis.

In many cases, wearing ill-fitting shoes can worsen the effects and pain of arthritis. Wearing shoes that have a lower heel and extra room can help your feet feel more comfortable. In cases of rheumatoid arthritis, the arch in your foot may become problematic. Buying shoes with proper arch support that contour to your feet can help immensely.

Alleviating Arthritic Pain

  • Exercises that stretch the foot can prevent further pain and injury and increase mobility
  • Most of the pain can be alleviated with anti-inflammatory drugs, heat, and topical medications
  • Massages can help temporarily alleviate pain.

It is best to see your doctor for the treatment that is right for your needs and symptoms. Conditions vary, and a podiatrist can help you determine the right method of care for your feet.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Wheat Ridge, CO . We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.

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