Medical Questions » Arthritis Questions » Question No. 95
Question:I have been told I have chondromalacia of a joint in my foot. I stand a lot in my job and I' m not overweight. What can be done to relieve the pain?
Answer:Chondromalacia is an abnormal softness of the cartilage which covers the ends of the bones in a joint. In patients with chondromalacia, this cartilage becomes pitted, uneven and damaged, and the bones grate across each other instead of gliding. The cause of chondromalacia is often difficult to determine, but it can certainly be caused by recurrent injury to the joint, from walking long distances, carrying excess weight or jumping. Patients complain of a pain deep in the joint, and worse pain on moving the joint. When the joint is moved, a fine grating may be felt by the patient, and by a doctor when s/he places her/his hand over the joint. You can significantly help yourself by taking the weight off your feet, by reducing your total body weight, and by wearing shock absorbent insoles (eg. Sorbothane). Further treatment involves firm bandaging and rest. "With this the majority of cases settle. Sometimes splinting or a plaster cast may be required to totally rest the joint for a few weeks. After many months, if pain persists, surgery to modify or remove the cartilage may be necessary.
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