Struggling With Gout Pain Dr Stuart Weisman’s Tips
- Boulder Community Health
Gout can strike suddenly causing excruciating pain and swelling in joints. It usually strikes a big toe, but can also affect the ankle, knee, foot, elbow or finger. The affected joint becomes so tender that even the slightest touch can be unbearable.
“Fortunately, an attack will clear in time, and there’s a lot we can do to prevent further attacks,” rheumatologist Stuart Weisman, MD, of Boulder Medical Center told a crowd of more than 120 people during a free health lecture held at the Boulder Jewish Community Center.
Gout Causes and Symptoms“Gout is a type of arthritis that occurs when you have high levels of uric acid in your blood,” explained Dr. Weismain. “Over time, the uric acid forms needle-sharp crystals that collect around your joints and soft tissues. Eventually, these crystals trigger a gout attack.” He said symptoms include:
- Sudden excruciating joint pain
Gout Flare-Ups: How to Get ReliefGout attacks can be quite severe, so it’s good to know how to quell the pain as soon as possible. Dr. Weisman offered a few options:
- Over-the-counter drugs – Take nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs early in an attack and at a maximum dose. For example, he said you could take a naproxen dosage of 500MG two times/day.
- Corticosteroids – Your doctor can prescribe a 5-to-14-day course of corticosteroids to reduce the inflammation.
- Colchicine – Best taken at the onset of an attack, prescription colchicine can help decrease the pain and swelling.
How Is Gout Diagnosed
In a clear-cut case, a primary care physician can make the diagnosis of gout with a high level of confidence. However, often there are two or more possible causes for an inflamed toe or other joint, which mimics some of the symptoms of gout, so tests to identify the presence of uric acid is performed.
Since the treatment for gout is lifelong, its very important to make a definitive diagnosis. Ideally, the diagnosis is made by identifying uric acid crystals in joint fluid or in a mass of uric acid . These can be seen by putting a drop of fluid on a slide and examining it using a polarizing microscope, which takes advantage of the way uric acid crystals bend light. A non-rheumatologist, when possible, can remove fluid from the joint by aspirating it with a small needle and send it to a lab for analysis. A rheumatologist is likely to have a polarizing attachment on their microscope at their office. Gout crystals have a needle-like shape, and are either yellow or blue, depending on how they are arranged on the slide .
Figure 11: Uric Acid Crystals Under Polarizing Light Microscopy
There are many circumstances where, however ideal it would be, no fluid or other specimen is available to examine, but a diagnosis of gout needs to be made. A set of criteria has been established to help make the diagnosis of gout in this setting .2
Table 1: Diagnosing gout when no crystal identification is possible
Ideally, 6 of 10 features will be present of the following:
Cherries Tart Cherries And Berries
Cherries, along with strawberries and other berries, are a rich source of antioxidants and help fight inflammation in the body.
Recent studies have found that eating about 30 pieces of cherries within 48 hours of a gout attack may cut the risk of recurrence of gout pain significantly.
One study found that cherry juice is helpful for treating gout because it lowered the levels of uric acid in the body.
Another study found that drinking 100 percent tart cherry juice significantly reduced the level of serum uric acid levels. The participants in the study drank 8 ounces of the tart cherry juice every day for four weeks.
Eat tart cherries in all forms fresh, or as cherry juice, or in the form of tart cherry extract. The Arthritis Foundation recommends to consume a handful of cherries or drinking a glass of tart cherry juice daily. The current studies showed improvements in people who drank a glass of tart cherry juice daily.
Some people take cherry juice extract capsules to manage their gout symptoms.
Read more on how to use tart cherries for joint inflammation and pain here.
Can black cherry juice reduce uric acid levels? There are no specific studies about black cherries for gout but cherries and tart cherries were found to reduce uric acid levels and help treat gout.
Also Check: Is Almond Milk Good For Gout
Strategies For Relief During Gout Attacks
Gout attacks can be quite severe, so its good to know how to quell the pain as soon as possible, said Dr. Weisman. He offered a few options for relief of gout flare-ups:
- Over-the-counter drugsTake nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs early in an attack and at a maximum dose. For example, you could take a naproxen dosage of 500MG two times a day.
- CorticosteroidsYour doctor can prescribe a 5- to 14-day course of corticosteroids to reduce inflammation.
- ColchicineThis medication is best taken at the onset of an attack prescription colchicine can help decrease pain and swelling.
All of these options have possible side effects and should not be taken without checking with your doctor first, Dr. Weisman warned. Its also important to note that medications like diuretics, niacin, and event low-dose aspirin can cause your uric acid levels to rise. Be sure to mention that you have gout if your doctor is planning to start you on a new medicine.
Easing Back Into Walking And Exercise After A Gout Flare
After a gout flare subsides, Dr. Iversen suggests aquatic exercises may be a good way to start re-engaging in exercise because the buoyancy of the water will reduce the impact on the joints.
Low-impact aerobic exercises can be helpful, too, such as on an elliptical machine. She says its important to keep your joints flexible by incorporating stretching and range-of-motion exercises once the gout flare subsides to promote good joint movement.
Be careful not to overdo it once you ease into post-flare exercise, she cautions. Patients should not be experiencing pain when walking once the flare has subsided. If you do experience pain with walking after a flare, go back to using a walking support and reduce your planned exercise until the pain subsides.
Read Also: Can You Get Gout In The Heel
Help From Your Podiatrist During A Gout Attack
If your gout flare-up is so painful that youre having trouble being productive, please come see us at one of our convenient locations. We understand how painful gout is and work with you to provide immediate relief, while also taking measures to prevent future flare-ups. Some of the treatment options we offer include:
- Corticosteroids injections or pills
- Anti-inflammatory medications
- Nutrition counseling
In severe cases when medication doesnt help your symptoms, you may need a surgical procedure to eliminate uric acid crystals that accumulate in your affected joint.
Partner with us to prevent gout or treat a flare-up. in Chesterfield, Clinton Township, Fort Gratiot, East China Township, Shelby Township, or Rochester, Michigan or .
You Might Also Enjoy…
Avoid Foods That May Trigger Gout
Purines are found in certain high-protein foods, such as certain types of seafood ,and red meat and organ meat . Avoid drinks that may trigger gout:
- Alcoholic beverages
- Sugary drinks
- Coffee and other caffeinated beverages. While some studies show that caffeine can actually protect against gout pain, others find that sudden spikes in caffeine intake can trigger an attack.
You May Like: Foods Bad For Gout Mayo Clinic
Now Its Your Turn To Understand How To Reduce Swelling In Foot From Gout
Now theres today a large number of us who no suffer gout because we tackled it at its cause more time. Instead of just tinkering with the symptoms.
Im one of them!
Remember, I acquired gout for exactly the same reasons it is experienced by at this point you.
An unhealthy gut microbiome recommended that bacteria which should have been removing one third of my bodys uric acid easily wasnt.
That bacteria possessed diminished to the stage that my kidneys have been trying to cope with the acid independently.
And they couldnt cope.
Nor can yours.
It wasnt that we was suddenly providing too much uric acid. Its that my gut seemed to be no in a position to support my kidneys take it off from my own body more lengthy.
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.
No thinking if some potential occasion will be smudged because Im laid up in agony with another episode.
In the same way pleasing is the fact that Ive furthermore considerably reduced my risks of struggling diabetes, kidney failure, cardiovascular disease and some cancers.
Shellys program lays it all out for us. No special knowledge is required. I found it easy.
How To Get Gout Relief At Home
This article was co-authored by Siddharth Tambar, MD. Dr. Siddharth Tambar, MD is a board certified rheumatologist at Chicago Arthritis and Regenerative Medicine in Chicago, Illinois. With over 19 years of experience, Dr. Tambar specializes in Regenerative Medicine and Rheumatology, with a focus on Platelet rich plasma and Bone marrow derived stem cell treatments for arthritis, tendinitis, injuries, and back pain. Dr. Tambar holds a BA in Economics from State University of New York at Buffalo. He earned his MD from State University of New York at Syracuse. He completed his Internship, Residency in Internal Medicine, and his Rheumatology Fellowship at Northwestern Memorial Hospital. Dr Tambar is board certified in both rheumatology and internal medicine. He also holds Musculoskeletal Ultrasound Diagnostic and Interventional certifications from the American College of Rheumatology and the American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine.There are 12 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page.wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. In this case, 100% of readers who voted found the article helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 464,327 times.
Don’t Miss: How Long Do Gout Attacks Normally Last
Can You Get Rid Of Gout
It ought to be fairly evident why youd want to get rid of gout, but is it possible in fact?
Sure can be, but theres not a one-size suits all solution.
In the next section, well come to be going over whats worked very best for us!
You wont want to miss out on this free videos.
NOTICE: Id highly recommend going to your doctor or seeing a specialist about this situation, since we arent experts. See our medical disclaimer for more details.
We dont know what will work for you, but we know whats worked for us and others
Lifestyle Modifications Can Prevent Gout Attacks
The good news about gout is that lifestyle changes can help prevent attacks or at least lessen the severity. A few suggestions from Dr. Weisman:
- Hydrate water helps remove uric acid from the body and lubricates your joints
- Maintain a healthy weight this can lower uric acid levels and significantly reduce the risk of gout attacks
- Include nonfat and low-fat dairy foods in your diet
- Eat lots of vegetables
- Get regular exercise if you are not exercising now, ask your doctor about a plan that is right for you
Dr. Weisman added that one study showed cherries might reduce the risk of gout attacks. Another suggested that high doses of regular or decaf coffee four cups a day or more can be helpful. Ask your about lifestyle changes that might be helpful.
Don’t Miss: Does Ginger Help With Gout
Exercising Helps Control Gout By Lowering Uric Acid Levels To Prevent Gout Attacks
Researchers have found that fat in the body carries more uric acid than muscle. Thus, when you reduce body fat, you can reduce uric acid levels in your blood, Dr. Iversen notes. Building cardiovascular health through exercise is also very important for people with gout because they have a higher risk of developing high blood pressure, according to Harvard Health. Gout is also strongly associated with developing coronary artery disease.
Dietary Changes To Improve Gout Symptoms
As gout is associated with diet, here are my top foods to avoid or minimize:
Foods to avoid or minimize:
- Purine-rich foods including: beef, goose, organ meats, sweetbreads, mussels, anchovies, herring, mackerel, yeast, spinach, asparagus, beans, lentils, mushrooms and dried peas. 00099-2/fulltext” rel=”nofollow”> 18)
- Oxalate-rich foods including: spinach, rhubarb, beets, nuts, chocolate, black tea, wheat bran, strawberries and beans.
- Common allergens including dairy, wheat , corn, and food additives.
- Refined foods including white breads, pastas and sugars.
Foods to eat and enjoy:
- High fiber foods including: barley, bran, rye, brown rice, avocados, potatoes and bananas.
- Vitamin C-rich foods including: oranges, red and green bell peppers, broccoli, strawberries, guava, kiwi and Brussels sprouts.
- Magnesium-rich foodsincluding: pumpkin seeds, yogurt or kefir, almonds, avocados, figs, artichokes, cashews and wild-caught salmon.
- Cherries and unsweetened cherry juice. Try my recipe for cherry limeade.
- Omega-3 rich foodslike wild-caught salmon and tuna, walnuts, flaxseed, chia seeds, natto and grass-fed dairy.
Don’t Miss: Foods To Avoid When You Have Gout
What Is The Fastest Way To Get Rid Of Gout
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs : These can quickly relieve the pain and swelling of an acute gout episode. They can shorten the attack, especially if taken in the first 24 hours.
- Corticosteroids: These drugs can be taken by mouth or injected into an inflamed joint to quickly relieve the pain and swelling of an acute attack. Corticosteroids usually start working within 24 hours after they are taken.
- Colchicine: An anti-inflammatory medicine that works best if taken within the first 24 hours of a gout attack.
Medications for reducing uric acid levels: These are usually prescribed after an acute attack ends to reduce uric acid levels in the body to prevent future attacks.
- Colchicine: Regular and low doses of colchicine may be given along with other medications below to prevent flare-ups.
- Allopurinol: It reduces uric acid production in the body.
- : It reduces uric acid production in the body.
- Probenecid: It acts on the kidneys to help eliminate uric acid.
- Pegloticase: This is a medication that is injected every 2 weeks. It reduces uric acid quickly and used when other medications fail.
Lifestyle and home remedies to treat acute gout and can prevent recurrent attacks:
- Limiting or avoiding alcohol consumption and drinks sweetened with fructose
- Limiting intake of foods high in purines, such as red meat, organ meats, and seafood
- Drinking plenty of fluids
Avoid Alcohol And Sugary Drinks
The heavy consumption both of alcohol and of sugary drinks â such as sodas and sweetened juices â correlates with an increased risk of developing gout.
Alcohol and sweetened drinks also add unnecessary calories to the diet, potentially causing weight gain and metabolic issues.
2010 analysis of data from female participants in the Nursesâ Health Study found that gout risk decreased as coffee consumption increased.
Women who consumed 1 to 3 cups of coffee per day had a 22% reduction in their risk of gout compared with those who drank no coffee. Women who consumed more than 4 cups of coffee per day had a 57% decrease in their risk of getting this condition.
A handful of studies have also linked coffee consumption to a lower risk of cardiovascular disease. A 2014 systematic review and meta-analysis of long-term coffee consumption found that people who consumed 3â5 cups of coffee per day had the lowest risk of cardiovascular disease.
As people with gout have a higher risk of cardiovascular disease, drinking coffee may help improve their overall health.
2011 meta-analysis of 13 randomized controlled trials found that vitamin C significantly reduced levels of uric acid in the blood.
Reduced uric acid levels could lower the risk of gout attacks. Research has not conclusively proven that vitamin C treats or prevents gout, however â only that it lowers uric acid levels.
Don’t Miss: Foods You Should Not Eat If You Have Gout
Ways To Deal With Painful Gout Attacks
Its difficult to focus on work or other daily activities when youre experiencing gout inflammation and pain. Symptoms can last for a few days or even weeks, with the worst pain usually occurring in the first day or two.
While the best thing to do is talk to your physician, there are several steps you can take right away ease your gout symptoms:
Excess uric acid in the bloodstream can lead to the formation of uric acid crystals in one or more joints, resulting in gout.Read:All About Gout – Symptoms, Diagnosis, Treatment
Learn How To Relieve Pain From Gout In Foot Naturally Using These Remedies
See how to relieve pain from gout in foot naturally using one of these four remedies. Check out the ingredients that you need to use!
Excess uric acid in the body produces a metabolic arthritis called gout. It is a toxic material present in the waste of the body.
A person may suffer a gout attack when the levels of this acid increase significantly. Very strong pain usually occurs by the formation of crystals that are not expelled from the body and are deposited in kidneys and joints.
There is no need to worry, as there are many home remedies that help eliminate these crystals of uric acid. So, if you also want to know how to relieve pain from gout in foot, keep reading!
You May Like: Vegetables That Cause Gout Flare Ups