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Can Med Assoc J. 1973 October 20; 109(8): 724-725, 729-730.
PMCID: PMC1947038

Painful feet in rheumatoid arthritis


Pain in the feet is an important diagnostic feature and a major management problem of rheumatoid arthritis. Of 50 hospitalized patients, 28% recalled painful feet as the sole presenting symptom of their disease.

Rheumatoid disease commonly affects the feet: 90% of the patients studied complained of foot pain at some time during the course of their disease, 86% had clinical involvement and 92% had radiological changes in their feet.

The forefoot is most frequently involved. Midfoot involvement was noted in 68% but was symptomatic in only 22%. Changes in the ankle were least common but always symptomatic.

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Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • Thould AK, Simon G. Assessment of radiological changes in the hands and feet in rheumatoid arthritis. Their correlation with prognosis. Ann Rheum Dis. 1966 May;25(3):220–228. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • ROPES MW, BENNETT GA, COBB S, JACOX R, JESSAR RA. 1958 Revision of diagnostic criteria for rheumatoid arthritis. Bull Rheum Dis. 1958 Dec;9(4):175–176. [PubMed]
  • POLLAK VE, PIRANI CL, STECK IE, KARK RM. The kidney in rheumatoid arthritis: studies by renal biopsy. Arthritis Rheum. 1962 Feb;5:1–9. [PubMed]
  • Seder JI. Management of foot problems in arthritis. Cleve Clin Q. 1970 Apr;37(2):111–116. [PubMed]

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