Tuesday, May 17, 2022

How Do They Test For Gout

Factors Affecting My Test Results

How To Self-Test For Uric Acid ~ eBuricacid Meter

Some medicines may affect your test results. These include:

  • Aspirin and other medicines that contain salicylate
  • Cyclosporine, a medicine sometimes used for autoimmune diseases
  • Levodopa, a medicine used to treat Parkinson disease
  • Some diuretic medicines such as hydrochlorothiazide and
  • Vitamin B-3 .
  • Vigorous exercise
  • Chemotherapy or radiation therapy for cancer
  • Foods high in purines, including organ meats, mushrooms, some types of fish and seafood, and dried peas and beans

The Four Stages Of Gout

Gout is best understood by seeing it as having four phases or stages :

Stage 1: High uric acid

Elevated uric acid without gout or kidney stone, this stage has no symptoms and is generally not treated.

Stage 2: Acute flares

This stage is marked by acute gout attacks causing pain and inflammation in one or more joints.

Stage 3: Intercritical periods

These are periods of time between acute attacks, during which a person feels normal but is at risk for recurrence of acute attacks.

Stage 4: Advanced gout

This is a stage of chronic gouty arthritis, in which there are lumps of uric acid, or tophi , frequent attacks of acute gout, and often a degree of pain even between attacks .

Figure 1: Stages of Gout

Figure 2: Illustration of Toe Joint with Gouty Tophus. normal toe joint Urate crystals, shown in white, at the “bunion joint,” represent a gouty tophus.)

Figure 3: Progression of Gout

How Do I Get Ready For The Test

Typically, you donĂ¢t need to do anything special. In some cases, your doctor may tell you not to eat or drink anything for 4 or more hours before the test. Your doctor will also let you know if you need to stop taking any medicines.

Make sure to tell your doctor about any medicines, herbs, and supplements you take, including over-the-counter, prescription, and illegal drugs. Any of these, including medications that make you pee more often , vitamin B-3, and aspirin, can affect your results.

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Looking For Reference Ranges

You may be able to find your test results on your laboratorys website or patient portal. However, you are currently at Lab Tests Online. You may have been directed here by your labs website in order to provide you with background information about the test you had performed. You will need to return to your labs website or portal, or contact your healthcare practitioner in order to obtain your test results.

Lab Tests Online is an award-winning patient education website offering information on laboratory tests. The content on the site, which has been reviewed by laboratory scientists and other medical professionals, provides general explanations of what results might mean for each test listed on the site, such as what a high or low value might suggest to your healthcare practitioner about your health or medical condition.

The reference ranges for your tests can be found on your laboratory report. They are typically found to the right of your results.

If you do not have your lab report, consult your healthcare provider or the laboratory that performed the test to obtain the reference range.

For more information, please read the article Reference Ranges and What They Mean.

Preparation For The Test

Uric Acid Test Kit

Before taking the blood test for gout, consult your doctor if you should avoid any foods, beverages, or medicines prior to taking the test.

You may need to fast for 4 or more hours before the test.

Make sure you inform your doctor about all medicines and supplements you are taking, including over-the-counter, prescription, and illegal drugs.

Also, avoid the following which may interfere with your urate test results:

  • Alcohol
  • Aspirin and ibuprofen
  • High levels of vitamin C
  • Dyes used in X-ray tests
  • Diuretics

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What Else Should I Ask My Healthcare Provider About Gout

Consider asking your healthcare provider:

  • What is causing the gout?
  • Do I have any joint damage?
  • What can I do to prevent future attacks?
  • Can any gout medications help me?
  • How long will I need to take gout medications?

A note from Cleveland Clinic

Gout is a painful form of arthritis. Extra uric acid in your body creates sharp crystals in the joints, leading to swelling and extreme tenderness. Gout usually starts in the big toe but can affect other joints. Gout is a treatable condition, and the uric acid level can be decreased by medication and lifestyle changes. Talk to your healthcare provider about medications that can reduce uric acid levels. They can also discuss changes you can make to your diet and lifestyle to prevent and reduce gout attacks.

Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 11/15/2020.

References

Can Gout By Diagnosed By X Ray

X-Ray examinations are often not performed for acute gout attacks. This is because x-rays do not reveal any problems during early gout stages and cannot provide much information to give a confirmed diagnosis. X-Ray examinations are more likely performed for chronic gout patients to determine the progress of the disease and to identify other health problems linked to gout, such as: tophi, joint damage and deformity and possible other sites for gout flare ups.

Also Check: What Is The Difference Between Gout And Rheumatoid Arthritis

What Happens At Your Appointment

The GP may ask about your diet and if you drink alcohol.

They may refer you to see a specialist and arrange a blood test and scan. Sometimes a thin needle is used to take a sample of fluid from inside the affected joint, to test it.

The blood test will find out how much of a chemical called uric acid there is in your blood.

Having too much uric acid in your blood can lead to crystals forming around your joints, which causes pain.

The Role Of Medication In Prevention Of Gout

Gout, Uric Acid Blood Test – What does it mean?

Table 3: Medications to pevent attacks of gout

  • Colchicine: to decrease the ability of uric acid crystals to cause inflammation.
  • Allopurinol and febuxostat: to decrease production of uric acid
  • Probenecid and lesinurad: to increase the excretion of uric acid
  • Pegloticase: to increase the breakdown of uric acid
  • Standard medications in preventing gout attacks

    i. Colchicine : using the matches analogy discussed above1, using colchicine can be seen as dampening the uric acid matches. Colchicine does not lower the bodys store of uric acid, but it decreases the intensity of the bodys inflammatory reaction to these crystals. Recent studies have shown that at least one mechanism of colchicines action is by acting to prevent a cascade of reactions that lead to the production of interleukin 1-beta, which is an inflammatory protein , which is important in gouty inflammation.8

    ii. Allopurinol: This agent is presently the most commonly used drug for the prevention of gout. Allopurinol blocks the enzyme xanthine oxidase, which blocks the breakdown of purines, thus decreasing the bodys total amount of uric acid. Allopurinol is effective in preventing gout no matter what the mechanism of the elevated uric acid was. Whether a person is making too much uric acid, or has difficulty excreting it via the kidney, allopurinols decrease in uric acid production leads to the same goal: a decreased total body uric acid.

    Table 4: Reasons to use medication to lower uric acid

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    Now Its Your Turn To Understand What Blood Test Do They Do For Gout

    Right now theres now a large number of us who no suffer gout because we tackled it at its produce more lengthy. Of merely trying out the outward symptoms Instead.

    Im one of them.

    Remember, I acquired gout for the same reasons you own it right now.

    An detrimental gut microbiome intended that bacteria which should have been removing a 3rd of my bodys uric acid simply wasnt.

    That bacteria acquired diminished to the point that my kidneys had been trying to cope with the acid on their own.

    And they couldnt cope.

    Nor can yours.

    It wasnt that we was suddenly making too much uric acid. Its that my gut seemed to be no longer in a position to assist my kidneys remove it from my own body.

    And the transformation from gout to no gout felt like magic almost.

    You can possibly imagine it yourself.. what it would be like to simply never have any gout ever again.

    Take my word for it, its wonderful!

    No flare-ups, no pain, no being laid-up in bed for days waiting for the pain to subside.

    Little wondering if some foreseeable future event shall be smudged because Im laid up in agony with another episode.

    In the same way pleasing is that Ive drastically reduced my risks of struggling diabetes as well, kidney failure, cardiovascular disease and some malignancies.

    Shellys program lays it all out for us. No special knowledge is required. I found it easy.

    Diagnosis Treatment And Prevention Of Gout

    BARRY L. HAINER, MD ERIC MATHESON, MD and R. TRAVIS WILKES, MD, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, South Carolina

    Am Fam Physician. 2014 Dec 15 90:831-836.

    Gout is the most common inflammatory arthropathy, affecting more than 8 million Americans.1 Gout accounts for approximately 7 million ambulatory visits in the United States annually at a cost of nearly $1 billion.2 Risk factors include genetics, age, sex, and diet.2,3 These factors may contribute to a high serum uric acid level, which is currently defined as a value of at least 6.8 mg per dL .4,5

    SORT: KEY RECOMMENDATIONS FOR PRACTICE

    Oral corticosteroids and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are equally effective in the treatment of acute gout.

    Clinical recommendation

    35, 36

    To prevent recurrent gout, patients should reduce their consumption of high-fructose corn syrupsweetened soft drinks, fruit juices, and fructose-rich vegetables and fruits . Reducing consumption of meat and seafood, and increasing consumption of dairy products help reduce the frequency of gouty symptoms. Consumption of low-fat or nonfat dairy products may help reduce the frequency of flares.

    A = consistent, good-quality patient-oriented evidence B = inconsistent or limited-quality patient-oriented evidence C = consensus, disease-oriented evidence, usual practice, expert opinion, or case series. For information about the SORT evidence rating system, go to .

    Read Also: How To Treat Gout In Toe

    How Our Service Works

    If you want to see if you might have gout, you can order a test kit from Superdrug Online Doctor. Ordering a test kit is quick and simple:

    • Fill in a brief questionnaire

    • Place an order for a gout test kit

    • The test kit can then be sent direct to your door

    If you want treatment for gout for the first time, you can get started through your GP. If youve had gout treatment before, you can reorder it from Superdrug Online Doctor. Just follow the steps below:

    • Fill out a short questionnaire about your health and lifestyle

    • Sign in or create an account, place your order, and make payment

    • A doctor will check your questionnaire and order to make sure treatment is right for you

    • If it is, your order can be sent to your door or to a local Superdrug Store for collection

    • If treatment isnt right for you, youll be refunded and given some advice on next steps

    Managing A Gout Flare

    Uric Acid Crystals in Urine: What do they indicate?

    Gout flares are unexpected and painful heres how to get a handle on them.

    Few things in life are more painful than a gout flare, so if youre awakened in the wee hours by a joint that is tender, swollen, red and radiating heat, youll want to act fast. Heres what you can do when a gout flare starts to ease the pain of and reduce the risk of others.

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    What Other Tests Might I Need

    Based on your symptoms and what your doctors looking for, you may be advised:

    • to perform more tests for gout, including one where they take fluid from the joint with symptoms or
    • to do a urinalysis, a urine test that looks for more signs of kidney stones.

    If you dont encounter gout or kidney stones, your doctor may order more blood or urine tests to look into what might be triggering high uric acid levels.

    What Does The Test Result Mean

    BloodHigher than normal uric acid levels in the blood is called hyperuricemia and can be caused by producing too much uric acid in the body or the inability of the kidneys to adequately remove enough uric acid from the body. Further investigation is needed to determine the cause of the overproduction or decreased elimination of uric acid.

    There are several genetic inborn errors that affect the break-down of purines. Cancer that has spread from its original location , multiple myeloma, leukemias, and cancer chemotherapy can cause increased production of uric acid. Chronic renal disease, acidosis, toxemia of pregnancy, and alcoholism can cause decreased elimination of uric acid.

    Increased concentrations of uric acid can cause crystals to form in the joints, which can lead to the joint inflammation and pain characteristic of gout. Uric acid can also form crystals or kidney stones that can damage the kidneys.

    The American College of Rheumatology published guidelines on the management of gout in 2012 that recommend that target serum urate levels should be below 6 mg/dL for people diagnosed with the condition.

    UrineHigh uric acid levels in the urine are seen with gout, multiple myeloma, metastatic cancer, leukemia, and a diet high in purines. Those at risk of kidney stones who have high uric acid levels in their urine may be given medication to prevent stone formation.

    Low urine uric acid levels may be seen with kidney disease, chronic alcohol use, and lead poisoning.

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    Interpretation Of Test Results

    Age, gender, and health history may affect the test result. Results are given in milligrams per deciliter .

    Hyperuricemia is characterized by results higher than 6 mg/dL or 7 mg/dL .

    Your test results, however, do not mean you have a problem as further investigation is required to determine the cause of the overproduction or decreased elimination of uric acid.

    Hyperuricemia typically indicates that your body is making too much uric acid or that your kidneys arent removing enough uric acid from your body.

    High uric acid levels in your blood can also indicate a variety of conditions, including:

    • diabetes
    • a diet high in purines
    • hypoparathyroidism
    • metastasized cancer.

    The break-down of purines is affected by several genetic inborn errors.

    Metastasized cancer, multiple myeloma, leukemia, and cancer chemotherapy can cause increased production of uric acid while chronic renal disease, acidosis, toxemia of pregnancy, and alcoholism leads to decrease elimination of uric acid.

    Foods high in purines are associated with high levels of uric acid. High levels can also be caused by a low-salt diet.

    The urate testing isnt considered a definitive test for gout.

    Its possible to have high uric acid levels without the symptoms of gout .

    The presence of gout can only be confirmed by testing a persons joint fluid for monosodium urate.

    However, your doctor can make an educated guess based on your urate blood levels and your gout symptoms.

    What Blood Test Do They Do For Gout: You Have To Know This

    Diagnosing and managing gout

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    Background And Objectives For The Systematic Review

    Gout is a form of inflammatory arthritis characterized by acute intermittent episodes of synovitis presenting with joint swelling and pain that may progress to a chronic intermittent condition, which may progress further to development of tophi , a condition called chronic tophaceous gout.

    Based on data from the 2007-2008 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey , the prevalence of gout among adults in the United States was estimated to be 3.9 percent , ranging from 2.0 percent in women to 5.9 percent in men.1 Comparing the most recent figures for the prevalence of gout to those of previous cycles of NHANES shows that the prevalence of gout appears to be increasing. The rise in the prevalence of gout has paralleled the increase in prevalence of conditions associated with hyperuricemia, including obesity, hypertension, hypertriglyceridemia, hypercholesterolemia, type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome, chronic kidney disease, and renal insufficiency. Certain medications also may increase the risk for developing gout .

    A 2013 study estimated the annual costs of gout to be $933 million , with the annual ambulatory care costs associated with gout potentially reaching $1 billion. Some 32 percent of the costs were attributed to gouty arthritis attacks, and drug expenditures accounted for 61 percent of the total costs.2

    What Are The Symptoms Of Gout

    An episode of gout is called a gout attack. Gout attacks are very painful and can happen quite suddenly, often overnight. During a gout attack, symptoms in the affected joint may include:

    • Intense pain.
    • Tenderness, even to light touch, such as from a bedsheet.
    • Warmth, or a feeling like the joint is on fire.
    • How long does a gout attack last?

    A gout attack can last a week or two. Between gout attacks, you may have no symptoms at all.

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    Uric Acid Urine Testing

    Kidneys filter uric acid out of the bloodstream and dispose of it through the urine. If the kidneys are unable to do this well, uric acid accumulates in the blood leading to elevated blood uric acid levels.

    • Uric acid urine testing is a secondary test, used in addition to the primary blood testing. The urine test helps your doctor to evaluate whether your kidneys are excreting enough uric acid.
    • The uric acid urine test is a simple process. You will be asked to collect all of your urine over a 24-hour period in a storage jug provided by the lab. When complete, return the jug to the laboratory for analysis.

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