Does Gout Cause Pain In The Heel
Goutyarthritis, much familiar called gout, occurs when there is a lot of uric acid in the body. As with most arthritis, it is a painfulcondition affecting joints of the body. The metatarsal-phalangeal joint locatedat the base of the big toe is the frequent area affected by this arthritis. Sometimesgout occurs in the knees, ankles, wrists, fingers, and elbow. Does it alsoattack the heel and cause heel pain?
Gout In Heel Diagnosis
Heel pain may be confused with other conditions, which can misguide the treatment. Therefore, it is necessary to get the condition diagnosed correctly. The laboratory investigations involve the aspiration of synovial fluid from the heel joint and analyze it for the presence of needle-shaped gout crystals under a polarizing microscope.
The Connection Between Heel Pain And Gout
While its fairly rare for gout pain to appear in the heel , it does happen!
Gout that leads to foot pain develops when there are high levels of uric acid in the body. And high levels of uric acid are most likely to develop under the following conditions:
- Diet: A diet that is heavily focused on red meat, sugar , and alcohol can increase levels of uric acid and gout.
- Increase in body fat: As your body increases its stores of body fat, uric acid levels rise, and your kidneys may struggle to eliminate the excess.
- Medications: Some medications, including hypertension, may increase uric acid in the body. Studies show that Thiazide diuretics are key culprits.
- Untreated medical conditions: High blood pressure, metabolic syndrome, diabetes, and kidney disease can all contribute to higher than usual levels of uric acid in the body, and gout.
- Genetics and gender: There is a genetic link to gout. If you have a family history of gout, you may be especially susceptible. Younger men are more likely to get gout than women however, postmenopausal women have an increased risk as well.
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Who Does Heel Bursitis Affect
It most frequently affects people who overuse their ankles without proper conditioning. A sudden increase in walking, running or jumping can cause heel bursitis.
It is important to wear proper footwear, especially when practicing a sport or exercising. Tight-fitting shoes can cause heel bursitis.
Heel bursitis can also affect those who have other disorders, including:
- Haglunds deformity.
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How Gout Affects Your Feet
Theres no mistaking the symptoms of a gout attack. Gout can produce foot pain and swelling so excruciating that Hippocrates called it the unwalkable disease, referring to its immobilizing effects. People who are awakened by a gout attack often claim that the pain is so intense they cant tolerate the feeling of a bedsheet on the affected joint.
Gout occurs when your body accumulates too much uric acid in your blood. Uric acid forms when your body processes purines, a substance thats naturally found in many foods. Uric acid typically dissolves in your blood and passes through your kidneys. However, if too much uric acid builds up, or the kidneys have problems processing it, the acid can form into sharp, needle-like crystals around your joints.
Podiatrist , of Foot Care Specialists, PC in Quincy and Dedham, Massachusetts, has the expertise necessary to determine whether the pain and swelling youre experiencing are related to gout. After a thorough examination, Dr. Lukoff can develop a treatment plan to relieve your discomfort and reduce your risk of future attacks.
How To Recognize Gout
The symptoms of your first gout attack will likely alert you that something is wrong. However, the symptoms can be so severe that you may attribute them to another medical condition, which could delay you in getting an accurate diagnosis.
Typical symptoms of gout include:
- Symptoms that develop suddenly and without warning, escalating to extreme intensity in just a few hours
- Pain so extreme at the affected joint that its often impossible to put weight on the area
- Symptoms so intense that they may awaken you from a sound sleep
- Swelling and/or redness at the site of the affected joint
- Fever and fatigue
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Achilles Tendinitis Risk Factors
Risk factors for Achilles tendinitis include:
- Gender: Men are more likely to develop Achilles tendinitis.
- Age: The Achilles tendon weakens with age, making injury more likely.
- Flat feet: Low arches place more strain on the Achilles tendon.
- Obesity: Again, being overweight puts additional strain on your body in numerous ways, particularly the weight-bearing structures of your feet and lower legs.
- Inadequate shoe support: If youre a runner, you need to replace your footwear regularly at least every 300-400 miles.
- Exercising in cold weather: Risk of Achilles tendon injury is higher in cold weather than when its warm.
- Hilly terrain: Running or walking on uneven or hilly terrain also increases the risk of injury.
- Certain medical conditions: Both high blood pressure and psoriasis increase your odds of developing Achilles tendinitis.
- Fluoroquinolones: An antibiotic prescribed to treat certain types of bacterial infections, fluoroquinolones increase your risk for tendinitis.
In What Way Does Gout Occur
Uric acid accumulation in the blood is the reason for gout. If there is excessive uric acid in the human body, or if the kidneys cannot filter the acid enough, then small, sharp uric acid crystals could develop in and about joints.
The crystals can be inflamed and can act as the factor where your pain originates. Some lifestyle choices and dietary factors can also cause gout, like eating an excessive amount of red meat or alcoholism. However, the possibility could also go up if there is a family history of gouty arthritis or you have hypertension, diabetes or kidney issues.
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How Is Gout In The Ankle Diagnosed
If you think you might have gout but havent been diagnosed, try to see a doctor while youre having symptoms. Gout is easier to diagnose when youre in the middle of a flare-up thats causing swelling, redness, and other visible symptoms.
During your appointment, your doctor will likely ask you several questions about your diet, any medications you take, and whether you have a family history of gout. This can help to rule out other potential causes of your symptoms, including an infection or rheumatoid arthritis.
Your doctor may also order a blood test to check your uric acid levels. But some people have high levels of uric acid and dont develop gout. Others have typical uric acid levels but still develop gout. As a result, theyll want to do some other tests as well.
An X-ray, MRI, or CT scan of your ankle can also help to eliminate other possible causes of joint inflammation. Depending on your exam, they may also order an ultrasound to check for the presence of crystals in your ankle.
Finally, they might do a joint fluid test. This involves taking a small sample of joint fluid from your ankle with a small needle and looking at it under a microscope for any uric acid crystals.
Based on the results of your exam and tests, they may refer you to an inflammatory arthritis specialist called a rheumatologist for treatment.
Theres no cure for gout, but a combination of medications and home treatments can help to manage ankle pain and reduce the number of flare-ups you have.
When To Contact A Doctor
A person should contact a doctor if they experience any symptoms of gout.
As gout flares can last for days or weeks, a person should contact a doctor if their symptoms last for a prolonged period of time. Treatment options are more effective when a person receives them in the early stages of a gout flare.
The doctor will also be able to confirm whether or not gout is present. They will carry out a physical examination of the affected joint and may also request other tests, such as:
- a blood test, which measures the level of uric acid in the body
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Heel Pain Is Never Normal
Heel or foot pain is never normal and should not be ignored. It could be something as simple as an overuse injury but it may also be the symptom of a condition requiring medical treatment, such as a stress fracture or ruptured tendon. Its important to consult with a heel pain podiatrist who has experience treating heel pain.
The Number 1 Cause Of Adult Heel Pain: Plantar Fasciitis
Plantar fasciitis is the most common source of heel pain in adults. It is caused by inflammation of the plantar fascia, the ligament that runs along the bottom of your foot and connects the toes to the heel.
The plantar fascia supports the arch of your foot and helps absorb the shock of impact when you walk or run. When you place too much tension on this tissue, it stretches and may become inflamed or even tear or rupture.
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How Is Heel Bursitis Treated
Heel bursitis treatment depends on whats causing your pain. Treatment may include:
- Orthotics: Heel wedges encourage proper walking form and reduce irritation in your heel. You can buy heel wedges in a store. Your healthcare provider can also make custom heel wedges for your foot.
- Physical therapy: Stretching your Achilles tendon will take pressure off your heel bursa. Calf stretches, toe-to-wall stretches and heel drop stretches may all provide relief. Calf, ankle and foot exercises strengthen your Achilles tendon and the surrounding area. This also takes pressure off your bursa.
- Corticosteroids: In rare cases, your healthcare provider may inject a corticosteroid into your heel. This will decrease inflammation.
- Surgery: Surgery is rarely needed. However, if your pain hasnt improved in six to 12 months, you may have to see a foot and ankle surgeon. They may surgically remove the affected bursa .
- Antibiotics: If an infection caused your bursitis, your healthcare provider will prescribe oral antibiotics.
Other Causes Of Heel Pain
Less common causes of heel pain should be considered before a treatment regimen for plantar fasciitis is undertaken. These include sciatica, tarsal tunnel syndrome, entrapment of the lateral plantar nerve, rupture of the plantar fascia, calcaneal stress fracture and calcaneal apophysitis . Rarely, systemic disorders can cause heel pain.
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What To Do During An Attack
- take any medication you’ve been prescribed as early as possible after you notice an attack this should start to have an effect within two or three days
- rest and raise the limb
- avoid knocking or damaging the affected joint
- keep the joint cool remove surrounding clothing and apply an ice pack, such as a bag of frozen peas wrapped in a towel
- ensure you’re well hydrated
Apply the ice pack to your joint for around 20 minutes. Don’t apply ice directly to your skin and don’t apply it for more than 20 minutes at a time because this could damage the skin.
If necessary, you can keep reapplying an ice pack to your skin during an attack, but you should wait until your skin has returned to a normal temperature first.
Can I Get Gout In My Ankles
One of the most debilitating and emotionally discouraging conditions for our patients is gout. Frisco patients that suffer from gout are often immobilized for hours or even days because of the pain. Many have to use crutches to move around. Gout most commonly impacts the joints of the big toe but it is absolutely possible for gout to strike in the ankle. Here, we are going to look at a few of the possible reasons why that might be. But if youre suffering from gout, your best course of action is to call Dr. Verville today at . Be sure to also take a to see some of the wonderful things that our patients have to say about Dr. Verville.
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Entrapment Of The Lateral Plantar Nerve
Entrapment of the first branch of the lateral plantar nerve, which provides innervation to the abductor digiti quinti muscle, has been said to cause plantar medial heel pain. The entrapment usually occurs between the abductor hallucis muscle and the quadratus plantae muscle, giving patients a burning sensation on the plantar aspect of the heel that is aggravated by daily activities and may even persist at rest. Palpation of this area may prove painful, with a tingling sensation. The same conservative modalities that are used to treat plantar fasciitis are effective in treating this condition.
The Best Ways To Get Rid Of Your Heel Spur
Yes, jogging and jumping are great for your heart. But for your heels? Not so much.
Constant pounding on hard surfaces can create a heel spur, a half-inch bony protrusion on the bottom of the heel bone. If youre lucky, heel spurs are painless, more an oddity than a condition needing treatment. But if youre not so fortunate, heel spurs can inflame the soft tissue around the protrusion, causing you intermittent or chronic pain. If that happens, you can say goodbye to running those 10Ks.
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Can Uric Acid Cause Heel Pain Signs Of Gout In The Heel
Gout is a type of arthritis caused by a buildup of uric acid and characterized by foot pain, swelling, redness, and difficulty walking is typically localized in the big toe. However, some types of gout may be localized in the heel, making it difficult to distinguish from plantar fasciitis.
Lets explore the connection between gout and heel pain, as well as symptoms that can help you tell the difference between plantar fasciitis and gout
Tips To Keep A Gout Attack At Bay
When agout attack hits, its usually swift, severe, and obvious somethings wrong. Often starting at night, the joint of your big toe is typically the source of sharp and intense pain.
Fortunately, gout often responds well to medication, but this is only useful when you have some on hand. Otherwise, youll need to cope with the pain of the attack until you can see a doctor and get a prescription. Even then, it may take six to 24 hours for full relief from the symptoms of your attack.
Its possible to modify your lifestyle to reduce the risk of future attacks. Contact podiatristErrol Gindi, DPM for an examination and consultation to learn more about your condition. As sharp as it is, its possible to get past the pain of gout.
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Symptoms Of Heel Pain Due To Uric Acid
Anyone can get gout, although its most common in individuals with the risk factors we covered earlier The symptoms of gout in the heel are subtly different from those of plantar fasciitis in the heel:
- Redness, swelling and tenderness that is most pronounced where the heel meets the ankle. You are also likely to notice symptoms at the base of the big toe.
- Often, gout symptoms will flare-up in the middle of the night
- During a flare-up, your heel will feel so hot and painful to the touch that even wearing socks is excruciating
- Pain that is less intense but lingers after a gout attack flare-up of pain
- Increasing difficulty moving the joint
As a general rule of thumb, pain from plantar fasciitis will improve with rest, while pain from gout will flare up during long periods of inactivity and rest.
Effective Medical Treatment For Gout
The American College of Rheumatology released gout management guidelines in 2012 and updated them in 2020. They recommend drugs classified as urate-lowering therapy for those who have experienced two or more gout attacks in a year as well as for those with joint damage from gout.
Specifically, the organization recommends allopurinol as a first-line treatment for all gout patients, even those with chronic kidney disease. Next in line is febuxostat both are a class of drugs called xanthine oxidase inhibitors.
In addition, the guidelines recommend use of anti-inflammatory medications including NSAIDs, prednisone, or colchicine along with the other medication.
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Decreased Excretion Of Uric Acid
Two thirds of urate excretion occurs in the kidneys while the rest is excreted through the gastrointestinal tract . Reduced secretory function of the transporter ABCG2 leads to decreased excretion of uric acid through the GIT resulting in rise of serum levels of uric acid and enhanced renal excretion .