What is Arthritis?

Arthritis is a chronic illness that causes swelling or inflammation in one or more joints in the body. Over 100 different types of arthritis currently exist. Approximately 1 in every 4 Americans are affected by arthritis. While most forms affect the cartilage or lining around the joints, some types like rheumatoid arthritis or psoriatic arthritis affect the immune system or specific organs in the body.

The effects of arthritis can be especially pronounced in the feet as they each contain 33 joints. Depending on the type of arthritis, feet can deteriorate and experience more pain due to their ability to bear the entire body's weight without relief.

Some common types of arthritis include:

  • Osteoarthritis—this is the most common type of arthritis occurring in patients in the United States. Osteoarthritis affects a patient's knees, hips, or fingers and can occur as a result of aging or due to injury.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis—a chronic inflammatory disease that occurs due to the immune system attacking healthy cells on accident.
  • Ankylosing spondylitis —arthritis of the spine that results in swelling and pain in joints of the spine.
  • Gout—an excess buildup of uric acid leads to the formation of crystals in the joints. Patients with gout typically experience symptoms in their big toe.
  • Juvenile arthritis—arthritis that occurs in children
  • Psoriatic arthritis—occurs with psoriasis, a skin illness that results in flaky patches of inflamed skin. Patients with psoriatic arthritis may also experience "sausage-like" appendages known as dactylitis.

What Are the Causes of Arthritis?

There is no one cause of arthritis. The different types of arthritis can be brought on due to:

  • trauma to the body or joints
  • aging
  • genes—for some patients, arthritis may be hereditary
  • viral or bacterial infections
  • smoking
  • occupation—certain work environments that require you to bend predispose patients to osteoarthritis
  • gender—women are more likely to develop osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis, while men are at a higher risk of having gout

What Are the Symptoms of Arthritis?

Symptoms of arthritis differ depending on the type of arthritis in question. In general, they can include:

  • swelling in the joints
  • pain and stiffness in the joints
  • redness and heat
  • soreness and muscle weakness
  • fever
  • rashes
  • itchiness
  • weight loss

What to Expect During Diagnosis and Treatment of Arthritis

If you've never been diagnosed or treated for arthritis before, you might be wondering what to expect during your first appointment at the podiatrist. As the symptoms of arthritis are common to other illnesses, it may often be difficult to diagnose unless a complete health history and imaging tests are conducted. For an accurate arthritis diagnosis, a trained healthcare professional such as a podiatric physician will:

  • review your complete health history, including your current symptoms of joint pain and swelling
  • physical examination paying close attention to the movement of the joints
  • conduct imaging and lab tests, including X-rays, MRIs, and arthrocentesis, which is used to evaluate joint fluid content

An arthritis diagnosis can be categorized into:

  • inflammatory arthritis such as rheumatoid arthritis
  • degenerative arthritis such as osteoarthritis
  • metabolic arthritis, such as gout
  • infectious arthritis, in the case of patients with Lyme disease

Some forms of arthritis cannot be prevented, and as a result, the best course of treatment for that is to manage a patient's symptoms to increase wellness and quality of life. Treatment of arthritis will depend on the type of arthritis and severity of symptoms, as well as a patient's overall lifestyle and environment. This can include:

  • use of custom-fitted orthotics or braces by a podiatrist
  • medication
  • physical therapy to restore movement to the joints
  • homeopathy or herbal supplements to control uric acid levels

Effective management of arthritis requires an accurate evaluation and prompt care using safe, effective medical techniques.

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New Orleans Podiatry Associates
4.9/5★★★★★22 Reviews
Verified Patient Reviews
1 of 22
K. D. (Verified Patient)
★★★★★Oct 05, 2021
Dr.Lang, and his staff are always extremely friendly , professional and helpful. This office is beautiful and I would definitely recommend it to everyone I know.
J. Z. (Verified Patient)
★★★★★Sep 23, 2021
Great Doctor and staff
T. J. (Verified Patient)
★★★★★Sep 16, 2021
Dr. Edward Lang has been my podiatrist since 2012. I could not have chosen a more compassionate, understanding and excellent doctor. The staff in his office is so accommodating and empathetic to each patients unique situation. If you are in need of a Podiatrist; do not hesitate to call Dr. Lang's office. You will not be disappoint
J. C. (Verified Patient)
★★★★★Aug 30, 2021
Mi esposo Carlos Cortez y yo estamos muy satisfechos 0 con el servicio del Doctor Lang, ya que mi esposo tuvo un accidente en su trabajo y se daño el tendón de su pie izquierdo, Él fue donde el primer doctor y este dijo que mi esposo no necesitaba cirugía, que solo con terapia podía repararlo, pero no nos convecimos de ese doctor y
S. W. (Verified Patient)
★★★★★Aug 30, 2021
I can't believe the luck I had in finding this place a few years ago. The sense of family between the staff is something you feel even as a patient there. Dr. Lang and staff work as a team, are very thorough and do everything imaginable to make you happy and comfortable. Everyone here cares about how you ate feeling and all of your n
M. B. (Verified Patient)
★★★★★Aug 30, 2021
Dr Lang and his office are the epitome of professional, kindness and caring.
A. W. (Verified Patient)
★★★★★Aug 30, 2021
I was so thankful I was referred to Dr. Lang for a foot injury due to tennis. Dr. Lang and his team made me feel welcome and took care of all of my needs. My foot healed great and I am so thankful to be back on the court!
M. L. (Verified Patient)
★★★★★Aug 30, 2021
Recently had an ingrown toenail removed. I was very anxious and nervous about the pain and getting it removed but the doctor and staff made me as comfortable as possible. The removal was not nearly as bad as I had anticipated. The doctor is very friendly and so gentle that I didn't even know he had started the procedure when he did.
B. D. (Verified Patient)
★★★★★Aug 30, 2021
Dr. Lang is an amazing podiatrist. Working in the service industry for over a decade ,took a toll on both of my feet. Dr. Lang, performed both bunion surgeries on me. Best decision I ever made, I am able to stand with out any of my feet aching. I can once again fit comfortably in my shoes. Thank You !!! Dr.Lang
A. E. (Verified Patient)
★★★★★Aug 30, 2021
The people running this place are amazing 🤩 people ! Leyla Aviles
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