There are many forms of arthritis, just some of which are osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, gouty arthritis, psoriatic arthritis and juvenile arthritis.
Joints commonly affected are the feet (33 joints), ankles, knees, hips and back.
Osteoarthritis is the result of repetitive trauma to a joint. It is rare that conservative treatments targeting joint stability do not achieve a reduction in the arthritic pain.
As arthritis has such destructive effects on individual's quality of life and independence, biomechanical treatments can form the basis of pain relief, return to activity and potentially slow the degenerative process.
Having stabilised the painful joint, manual therapies such as joint mobilisation and muscle strengthening and stretching programs are effective in managing most arthritic joints.
Rheumatoid Arthritis often produces painful nodules. Protection for these can be incorporated into an orthotic so that the patient can weight bear without pain.
Juvenile Arthritis often has similar symptoms to other biomechanical problems, it can be easily missed and so is important to have it properly diagnosed by the Podiatrist, who will then work with the general practitioner and specialist in treatment programmes.