20 Jun 2018 Can Children Suffer from Arthritis?
Juvenile arthritis is a term used to describe all types of arthritis diagnosed in someone aged 16 years or younger. It is an umbrella term used to categorise arthritic conditions that cause pain, swelling, stiffness and at times inflammation in a joint or joints.
Juvenile arthritis can be mild or in some cases severe which can last up to months or even years. It is an autoimmune disease however the exact aetiology of juvenile arthritis is currently unknown.
Types of juvenile arthritis:
- Oligoarticular/pauriarticular- the most common type, begins at 2-4 years of age and can have an effect of up to 4 joints
- Polyarticular- occurs in children between ages 1-12, and can affect 5 or more joints
- Psoriatic- affects skin as well as joints
- Systemic- involves fever and rash symptoms
- Enthesis-related- affects the points where the bone, tendon and ligaments meet
- Joint pain
- Joint stiffness
- Joint swelling
- Skin rash
A number of examinations and tests are usually conducted to confirm the diagnosis as well as to rule out any other possible diagnoses that present in a similar manner to the condition. These include:
- Medical history
- Physical examination
- X rays and bone scan
- Eye test
As there are various types of juvenile arthritis, treatment options need to be tailored specifically to your child. Some treatment options that your podiatrist may discuss with you include:
- Strengthening exercises to aid in joint mobility, strength and pain
- Orthotic therapy
- Splints to help support the joint
If any of this seems applicable to your child’s feet, book an appointment now to see our friendly podiatrists.