Arthritis can be one of the many parts of getting older that you could live without. Or perhaps you are a young person with rheumatoid arthritis and tired of being slowed down by your painful ankle and toe joints. Arthritis affects the joints, and often the muscles, ligaments and tendons around the joint. From the outside it can appear swollen and red, even warm to the touch. It makes activities that you used to love like jogging, walking, and just even getting out of bed a chore.
Arthritis in any part of the body can be very irritating. It slows you down and can keep you from doing the things you love the most. But when it's in the ankle it is especially irritating because it affects your mobility. Ankle arthritis is not very common, but it can be more common in individuals who have rheumatoid arthritis or old ankle injuries. A bad sprain in your youth could cause an arthritic flare up. Another common reason for painful ankle arthritis is gout. Gout is caused by a buildup of uric acid in the blood stream. The uric acid is deposited in the joints, particularly in the foot and ankle. The joints become severely inflamed, causing great pain. Podiatrists deal with gouty arthritis on a regular basis and are able to prescribe medication to treat your gout as well as injecting the joint with cortisone if necessary and suggest dietary changes that might help alleviate your symptoms
However, often for painful ankle arthritis, the treatment solutions are not always as simple as taking a pill. Ankles are complex parts of the body and need special care. If your ankle arthritis is slowing you down, you should visit your podiatrist to discuss treatment options. Podiatrists frequently deal with arthritis in the foot and ankle and are well-trained to deal with your painful condition. They can provide orthotics or custom bracing that might bring some relief or offer a variety of surgeries to deal with your unique problem.
Sometimes a surgery such as an ankle fusion surgery will still allow you great mobility, but without the pain. Advances have even been made in using bone grafts to recreate the joint that arthritis has destroyed. While the thought of surgery can be frightening, the end results are worth the trouble when you finally experience relief and can get back to the activities you love.