Rheumatoid Forefoot Deformity
Patients with rheumatoid arthritis in the feet are at an increased risk of developing certain physical deformities such as bunions, metatarsalgia and hammertoes, which are extremely painful and disabling conditions. These conditions develop as a result of joint inflammation, loosening of the ligaments and capsule lining and a degeneration of cartilage in the joint. Patients with these conditions often have difficulty walking and wearing shoes as the foot becomes more and more inflamed.
Treatment of forefoot deformities may vary depending on the type and severity of the condition, but aims to relieve pain and restore the normal appearance and alignment of the foot. Conservative treatments may include modifying your shoes or wearing orthotics, while most patients will need to undergo surgery for this condition. Surgery for rheumatoid forefoot deformities may involve the Hoffman procedure, joint fusion or osteotomy of the metatarsals in severe cases.
After surgery, most patients are able to walk and wear shoes without pain. Deformities rarely recur and patients are able to enjoy these results for many years.