Psoriatic Arthritis

Psoriatic arthritis is a type of arthritis that usually occur in the presence of a skin disorder called psoriasis. Most of the time a patient is first diagnosed with psoriasis and thereafter psoriatic arthritis, however sometimes joint involvement may occur before the development of the skin lesions. Psoriasis and Psoriatic arthritis are both chronic conditions. Joint involvement is variable with possible flare ups and remission of symptoms.

Signs & Symptoms include:

  • Joints can be affected on one or both sides of the body
  • Pain, swelling, warm and tender to touch
  • May resemble symptoms of Rheumatoid arthritis in some cases.
  • Swelling of fingers and toes
  • Skin and nail changes that may resemble a fungal infection.
  • Heel or foot pain
  • Lower back pain

Management

There is no cure, however the condition can be managed by controlling the inflammation, decreasing pain and improving joint functionality. Good care would involve a multidisciplinary approach and therefore appropriate referral to a Rheumatologist/Dermatologist is usually needed.

  • General Podiatric care: Attending to the specific foot care needs of the patient. Management of the skin and nail condition.
  • Ensuring the use of appropriate socks and footwear
  • Management of foot pain
  • The use of gel/silicone/ other palliative and cushioning devices that can decrease pain and increase comfort.
  • Innersoles and custom made orthotics
  • Recommendation of appropriate foot and skin care products