The relevance of ultrasound examination of the foot and ankle in patients with rheumatoid arthritis – a review of the literature

Oana Șerban, Maria Bădărînză, Daniela Fodor


Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an inflammatory disease characterized by symmetrical involvement of the joints and tendons, especially of the hands and wrists, but also of the feet and ankles from the very beginning of the disease. For the patient, the foot and ankle involvement is equally important as the other joints, since it affects the functionality of the feet and the quality of life of the patients. It is already known that subclinical involvement of the ankles and feet occurs even in patients that are considered in clinical remission, thus they do not need for changes of therapy, but still might benefit from it. In spite of this, the
clinicians do not give enough care to the ankle and foot in RA patients, especially if asymptomatic, resulting future deformities, joint damage and feet disability. In order to show the importance of the feet and ankles in RA patients and to demonstrate the indispensable role of ultrasonography (US) for that purpose, at the same time displaying the US abnormalities that should draw our attention, we performed this review of the literature. 


ultrasound; synovitis; foot; ankle; rheumatoid arthritis

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