Deborah Thomas, 60, likens herself to the Tin Man. She has been struggling with stiffness and joint pain from osteoarthritis since 2002, and has undergone an ankle replacement and two mid-foot fusions in an effort to reduce her discomfort and increase flexibility.
Researchers at the University of Pittsburgh are testing a drug that could prevent others from suffering from this condition, which currently affects over a hundred million Americans.
Osteoarthritis is essentially a loss of cartilage caused by damage or overuse of the joint. However, research shows that it is not a physical wearing away of the cartilage the causes the bulk of the destruction, but a feedback process where joint trauma triggers inflammatory agents, which trigger destructive enzymes, which attack the cartilage. The research team is testing a drug that can possibly inhibit those destructive enzymes.
Arthritis is a painful condition but can be managed with proper treatment. If you are suffering from arthritis in the lower extremities, consult podiatrist Dr. Jeff Wachtel, D.P.M., of Wachtel Family Foot Care. Dr. Wachtel will assess the condition and provide a treatment option that is right for you.
Arthritic Foot Care
In an average lifetime, we walk approximately 75,000 miles. This can put a great deal of stress on the 26 bones and 30 joints that we have in our feet. As we get older, our feet lose flexibility and elasticity. Our shock absorbers weaken, and if arthritis comes into play, the joints become inflamed and distorted. Arthritic foot care and treatment would become imperative at this point.
It is best to take care of your feet by wearing well-fitted shoes. Certain conditions may develop when you wear shoes that don’t fit properly, for example hammertoes, neuroma, and bunions. Wearing shoes that have a lower heel and extra room in the shoe can help your feet be comfortable. In cases of rheumatoid arthritis, the arch in your foot may become problematic. Buying shoes with arch support will help; it is also a good idea to buy shoes that contour to your foot.
Alleviating Arthritic Pain
-Specific exercises may help; stretching the Achilles tendon can prevent further pain and injury. Stretching can also increase your mobility.
For more information about Arthritic Foot Care, follow the link below.
If you have any questions, please contact our office in Lansdale, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.
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