Arthritis in the Midfoot
The feet are extremely important! They are designed to be a solid foundation when we stand and to move us efficiently from place to place. There are many factors, however, that influence whether they can do their job properly. A common condition that limits the function of the feet is arthritis, and it can sometimes lead to a drastic loss in quality of life. At Country Foot Care, we don’t want you to be a victim of chronic foot pain, and we have good news–understanding the problem can go a long way in preventing and treating it.
What is Midfoot Arthritis?
Your midfoot is the set of bones between your ankle bones and the long metatarsal bones that connect to your toes. They consist of the navicular bone, the cuneiform bones, and the cuboid bone, all fitting together to form the arch of your midfoot. These function to transfer your weight from your heel as you walk or run. They also help you balance and adjust to uneven ground. They need to be both flexible enough to absorb the impact as your foot hits the ground and rigid enough to push off for the next step. These bones also help distribute your weight so that no one part of your foot has to bear too much pressure.
Unfortunately, these bones often are the site of arthritis. Many times this is the result of degeneration of the cartilage or bones after an injury. It is also becoming more and more common as people become more active in running, sports, and other activities that put stress on your feet. This type of arthritis is often called wear and tear, or osteoarthritis. Another type is called rheumatoid arthritis, which is an immune disease that causes your body to attack the cartilage between the bones of your joints and cause it to disintegrate. In either case, the result of bones rubbing against bones is irritation, inflammation, and pain.
Are There Treatments for Midfoot Arthritis?
There is no cure for this condition. The goal is to manage the pain and limit the amount of disability that results, and there are conservative (non-surgical) treatments that do just that. For many years NSAID medications (anti-inflammatories) were used to treat this condition, but the side effects and dangers associated with them have led doctors to try to avoid them, especially over the long term.
The focus now has shifted more toward orthotics that relieve the pressure on the painful joints and distribute it more evenly over the foot. Many arthritis sufferers have experienced good results with custom molded foot orthotics. The goal is to limit motion (at the effected joints) to relieve pain. If conservative treatment fails and you are not finding any relief, there are surgical options that may stabilize the joints, although they may mean reduced range of motion. Other non-surgical treatments include cortisone injections and shockwave treatments which can relieve pain locally.
If you believe you may be developing arthritis in your feet, don’t hesitate to contact us. Country Foot Care offers state-of-the art treatment methods in a kind and caring atmosphere at our boutique-style offices in NY. We offer two convenient options when making an appointment, either by phone to either of our offices or online using the MAKE AN APPOINTMENT button at the top of this page.