Tuesday, 19 September 2023 00:00

Ways Arthritis Affects the Toes

Arthritis is an inflammatory condition that can have a profound impact on joints in the body, including the toes. The two forms of arthritis that affect the toes are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Osteoarthritis is often a result of wear and tear on the joints, where the protective cartilage at the ends of bones gradually deteriorates. When this occurs in the toes, it can lead to pain, stiffness, and a reduced range of motion. Walking and performing everyday tasks can become difficult. In contrast, rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disorder in which the immune system mistakenly attacks the joints, including those in the toes. This autoimmune response triggers inflammation and swelling, and can even lead to deformities in the affected toes. Over time, the toe joints may suffer significant damage, further diminishing their functionality. This may cause chronic pain and mobility issues that can affect overall foot health. Basic activities such as walking, standing, or even wearing certain types of shoes can become challenging and painful. To address these issues effectively, it's suggested that you make an appointment with a podiatrist. This foot doctor can provide an accurate diagnosis, create a personalized treatment plan, and offer advice on managing symptoms. 

Arthritis can be a difficult condition to live with. If you are seeking treatment, contact Jim Maxka, DPM from South Penn Foot & Ankle Associates. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Arthritic Foot Care  

Arthritis is a term that is commonly used to describe joint pain.  The condition itself can occur to anyone of any age, race, or gender, and there are over 100 types of it.  Nevertheless, arthritis is more commonly found in women compared to men, and it is also more prevalent in those who are overweight. The causes of arthritis vary depending on which type of arthritis you have. Osteoarthritis for example, is often caused by injury, while rheumatoid arthritis is caused by a misdirected immune system.


  • Swelling
  • Pain
  • Stiffness
  • Decreased Range of Motion

Arthritic symptoms range in severity, and they may come and go. Some symptoms stay the same for several years but could potentially get worse with time. Severe cases of arthritis can prevent its sufferers from performing daily activities and make walking difficult.

Risk Factors

  • Occupation – Occupations requiring repetitive knee movements have been linked to osteoarthritis
  • Obesity – Excess weight can contribute to osteoarthritis development
  • Infection – Microbial agents can infect the joints and trigger arthritis
  • Joint Injuries – Damage to joints may lead to osteoarthritis
  • Age – Risk increases with age
  • Gender –Most types are more common in women
  • Genetics – Arthritis can be hereditary

If you suspect your arthritis is affecting your feet, it is crucial that you see a podiatrist immediately. Your doctor will be able to address your specific case and help you decide which treatment method is best for you.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Hanover, PA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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