Do you suffer from psoriasis? If so, it is important to be on the lookout for the signs and symptoms of psoriatic arthritis. It is an immune disease that has a tendency to affect the foot and ankle of psoriasis sufferers who are over the age of 30. Those that have it typically experience swelling, pain and cellulitis in their ankles, heels and soles of the feet. In addition, their toenails may begin to show signs of flaking and pitting or fall off. As such, arthritic foot care is needed.
More often than not, psoriatic arthritis is diagnosed using a series of laboratory and imaging tests. Unfortunately, it is incurable at this time, but there are arthritic foot care treatments that may reduce or eliminate discomfort. Among them are the following:
- Special Footwear and Shoe Inserts
- Weight Management and Exercises
- Medications and Steroid Injections
- Therapeutic Massage and Reiki
- Ankle Joint Replacement Surgery
- Acupressure and Acupuncture
- Hydrotherapy or Aquatics
- Hot and Cold Therapy
- Tai Chi and Yoga
The type of arthritic foot care treatments used to help St. Louis podiatry patients will depend on which type of arthritic psoriasis has been diagnosed. There are actually five different types. The list includes arthritis mutilans, asymmetric, symmetric, spondylitis and DIP. The ones that most often include the ankle and foot are DIP, symmetric, arthritis mutilans and asymmetric. DIP and arthritis mutilans generally affect the toes whereas the other two may occur in the ankles too.
As mentioned previously, special footwear is often part of arthritic foot care plans. For the most part, St. Louis podiatrists recommend that psoriatic arthritis patients wear wide, box-toed, supportive shoes that feature adjustable Velcro straps to accommodate for periodic episodes of swelling. However, if the person’s foot is already severely deformed, custom fitted shoes may be ordered instead.
In addition, patients are encouraged to wear friction reducing socks, trim their toenails often, apply moisturizer and use a gentle foot cleanser on a daily basis. Adopting such measures should help to minimize episodes of cellulitis, ulcer formation and pain. Daily exercises, like achilles and toe stretches, are also typically prescribed.
To learn more about arthritic foot care for people with psoriasis you should schedule a consultation with your local podiatrist. We look forward to hearing from you.
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