Charcot Arthropathy


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What is a Charcot Arthropathy? Here are some facts about this condition


Charcot arthropathy is a progressive condition of the musculoskeletal system that is characterized by joint dislocations, pathologic fractures, and debilitating deformities. The most common etiology of Charcot arthropathy now is diabetes. Charcot foot, Charcot joint or neuropathic joint are its other terms.

Additionally, charcot arthropathy results in progressive destruction of bone and soft tissues at weightbearing joints; in its most severe form, it may cause significant disruption of the bony architecture. Charcot arthropathy can occur at any joint; however, it occurs most commonly in the lower extremity, at the foot and ankle.

What are the symptoms of Charcot Arthropathy?

So in the early stages of the condition there is usually
  • pain or discomfort within the affected foot precipitated by an injury.
  • Redness on the foot – The affected foot is usually 2 degrees warmer than the unaffected foot
  • Lots of inflammation and swelling
  • Bone Stress fractures
  • The middle of the foot begins to collapse – Diabetic Neuropathy is always present
Once the foot progresses to the chronic stage it can often become painless and early symptoms of the condition disappear. Also, in the late stage of the condition, it is usually painless and often progresses to a ‘rocker bottom’ foot with no swelling or temperature difference in relation to the unaffected leg. In addition, bone remodelling and fusion/large bone fragments is commonly seen on X-ray.

Hence, if not treated early, the foot affected by Charcot’s arthropathy becomes very deformed and ulcer prone.  So treatment at this stage is palliative and relies on special foot wear, regular podiatry treatment and limitation of activities. Amputation is sometimes required because of intractable ulceration. Therefore, diagnosing Charcot’s arthropathy at the acute stage of a “swollen foot” is essential and limb saving. 👣

Do you have these symptoms? One of our podiatrist can assist and help what treatment options are best for you.
Schedule an appointment here or you may call us at 44 (0) 207 101 4000. 📞



We hope you have a feetastic day! 👣☀️

-The Chelsea Clinic and Team


Check our latest blog about Accessory Navicular Syndrome here⚠️❗-❗/

 ‎Check our blog about Ankle Sprain here


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