Osteoarthritis and Your Feet


According to the Arthritis Foundation, 1 in 5 Americans suffers from arthritis. That’s a whole lot of joint pain going on.

Arthritis can affect any joint in your body; that is, anywhere one bone meets another bone. There are 33 joints connecting your toes, midfoot, hindfoot, and ankle. Multiply that by 2 feet and you can see that there are a lot of places where you can develop foot and ankle arthritis.

There are several kinds of arthritis. One of the most common to affect the joints in your feet and ankles is osteoarthritis. To understand what osteoarthritis is, let’s look at one joint in particular: the metatarsophalangeal, which is at the base of your big toe.

You use this joint each and every time you take a step. With every bend of that joint, there’s pressure against the protective cartilage that helps the bones glide together. Over time, that cartilage becomes thinner and less effective. The result is bone crunching against bone. The older you get, the higher your risk of developing osteoarthritis. You’re also at risk if you’ve had an injury to any of these joints in the past.

Conservative treatments can help

Arthritis in your feet can be painful and debilitating, but there’s no need to suffer. Our board-certified podiatrists Dr. Samantha Boyd, Dr. Hal Ornstein, Dr. Dan Phan, and Dr. Joseph Saka can offer you a number of non-invasive treatments to relieve the pain of osteoarthritis. These include

  • a change in the type of shoes you’re wearing

  • custom orthotic shoe inserts that take the pressure off an aching joint

  • anti-inflammatory medications

  • steroid injections

  • physical therapy which we offer right here in our Monmouth County podiatry office

Surgery is also an option

If your foot arthritis is advanced and is really interfering with your life, foot surgery or even total ankle replacement may be a viable option for you. For relief from foot arthritis or to get a surgical consult, make an appointment with us at Affiliated Foot & Ankle Center in Howell or Jackson, New Jersey. Call us at (732) 905-1110 or contact us online.