RA can have an effect on the skin and underlying tissues, making them vulnerable to damage and infection. The nodules caused by RA can also lead to irritation of the skin, causing the formation of corns and calluses. If neglected, these can develop into ulcers. While uncommon, patients with RA may also experience decreased blood supply, leading to other potential complications of the foot.
In addition to medications prescribed by your rheumatologist to control your rheumatoid arthritis, podiatrists may assess for joint and foot posture abnormalities, provide information regarding footwear and customised podiatry prescription orthotics, or prescribe various treatment modalities to help with pain and address joint deformities. While footwear may not seem like a major concern, many patients with RA also wear poor fitting shoes or shoes that are worn out, increasing their risk of complications due to damage to their joints rubbing of the skin.
Podiatric intervention can significantly reduce foot pain and disability, with early treatment being key for successful intervention.
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