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Midfoot Arthritis

What is midfoot arthritis?

Midfoot arthritis results from loss of cartilage in the joints of the midfoot, specifically the tarsal-metatarsal joints, which leads to pain and swelling. These symptoms are often aggravated by increased activity and can lead to a painful limp.

What causes midfoot arthritis?

Arthritis of the midfoot is often due to trauma such Lisfranc injury but may also be due to irregular loading of the midfoot from deformity, or from inflammatory arthritis such as rheumatoid arthritis, gout.

What are the symptoms of midfoot arthritis?

Patients with midfoot arthritis typically have pain that is aggravated by movement, pressure, walking and running.

How is midfoot arthritis diagnosed?

Midfoot arthritis is diagnosed by thorough history and physical examination. X-rays are typically ordered to assess for any signs of arthritis such as joint space narrowing and sclerosis. Sometimes MRI and/or CT scans may be ordered to better evaluate the joints of the midfoot.

How is midfoot arthritis treated?

Nonsurgical treatment

Conservative treatment for midfoot arthritis is focused on relieving pressure on the midfoot and diminish repetitive loading through the painful area. This is often achieved with rest, use of a cast or walking boot, ice, activity modification, anti-inflammatory medications, stiff rocker bottom shoes, orthotics, and cortisone injections.

Operative treatment

Operative treatment can be necessary in patients who fail conservative therapy. The surgery involves fusing the painful midfoot joints to reduce the pain.