Who Should Diagnose And Treat Gout
The disease should be diagnosed and treated by a doctor or a team of doctors who specialize in care of gout patients. This is important because the signs and symptoms of gout are not specific and can look like signs and symptoms of other inflammatory diseases. Doctors who specialize in gout and other forms of arthritis are called rheumatologists. To find a provider near you, visit the database of rheumatologistsexternal icon on the American College of Rheumatology website. Once a rheumatologist has diagnosed and effectively treated your gout, a primary care provider can usually track your condition and help you manage your gout.
Take Care Of Yourself
Get other health conditions under control. Gout is linked with high blood pressure, diabetes, metabolic syndrome, heart disease, and kidney disease. If you have any of those problems, get treatment.
Ask your doctor if you need to make changes to the medications you take. Aspirin, diuretics for high blood pressure, and drugs for people whoâve had an organ transplant can trigger gout. Your doctor can help you find other alternatives.
Drink more fluids. You may lower your odds of gout if you drink at least eight glasses of fluids a day. Make sure that at least half of that is water.
Why Do Gout Attacks Happen More At Night
Gout attacks happen more at night and in the early morning rather than during the day. You may have an attack start during your sleep. The reasons this happens are not entirely known, but some of the leading ideas are dehydration, lower body temperature, and changes in hormone levels during sleep. Talk to your doctor about ways to prevent gout attacks during your sleep.
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How Are Gout Attacks Treated
See your doctor as soon as you have an attack. With effective treatment the attack may be controlled within 1224 hours and treatment need not be continued after a few days. There are also things you can do to help relieve the pain:
- rest until your symptoms improve
- raise the inflamed joint and put an ice pack on it
- do not exercise during an acute attack
- take pain relief medicines, for example non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as naproxen or diclofenac can be very effective in reducing pain and inflammation. If you are unable to take NSAIDs, medication such as colchicine or prednisone can help reduce the pain of gout.
- to get the best results, take your NSAIDs as soon as possible at the first sign of an attack, and continue until the pain and swelling goes down.
Read more about medicines for gout
Risk Factors For Gout
Consumption of beer or spirits
Drugs: loop or thiazide diuretics, low dose aspirin , ciclosporin, tacrolimus, ethambutol, pyrazinomide, nicotinic acid
Excessive intake of purine rich foods
Other risk factors
Administration of cytotoxic drugs
Inherited enzyme deficiencies
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Have A Medication Action Plan To Manage Acute Gout Attacks
- Make sure you have a supply of medications to treat a gout attack if it occurs.
- If you feel a gout attack starting, take this medication as soon as possible to prevent it becoming very severe.
- If you are on uric lowering tablets, do NOT stop these when you get a gout attack. Keep taking them as well as your pain medication.
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I Have Read That Water Can Help Prevent Flare Ups Is There Any Reason Why Any Research To Back It Up Or Is It Just A Myth
Water acts as an apparatus that uric acid travels in during the elimination process by your body. During a gout attack it’s important to work towards lowering uric acid levels as the continued accumulation of them causes the creation of monosodium urate crystals that cause the painful inflammation and swelling of gout. Decreasing your uric acid levels can help manage the pain and can also decrease the duration of your gout attack by essentially ridding of the ‘fuel causing the fire’.
Think of this process like a train: the uric acid or passengers collect in the urine or train and when signaled, the urine leaves your body when you relieve yourself. When you don’t drink enough water, there aren’t enough trains for the passengers , so gradually the uric acid begins to accumulate and when that occurs it undergoes its crystallization process that ultimately leads to a gout attack.
How To Get Rid Of Gout And Other Gout Remedies
Gout is a condition that, when left untreated, can develop into chronic, recurring symptoms that significantly affect quality of life. Gout is caused by the buildup of uric acid crystals in a joint and, as the condition progresses, multiple joints are often affected. These needle-like crystals cause intense pain, swelling, redness, and warmth at the affected site. The big toe is the most commonly affected joint, but gout is also found in the mid-foot joints, ankles, knees, and wrists.
Unfortunately, there are currently no known gout cures available to patients. However, there are many remedies for gout that can significantly decrease the severity and duration of gout attacks. It is important to act fast when the symptoms of gout appear so that interventions can be taken before the pain and discomfort intensifies. Early treatment can also prevent bone, nerve, and tissue damage that is associated with severe, chronic gout. Read on to find out how to get gout relief.
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Try Natural Remedies For Gout
There are some nutrients that could be helpful.
- Proanthocyanidins can help neutralise uric acid and reduce inflammation
- Quercetin can reduce uric acid and may also provide relief
- Omega-3 fatty acids can reduce inflammation, so add a supplement if youre also cutting out certain seafoods that are rich in purines
- Heard about cherry juice for gout? Its proposed that tart cherry juice could temporarily lower blood uric acid levels, but more research is required to fully understand this link5
What Increases Your Chances For Gout
The following make it more likely that you will develop hyperuricemia, which causes gout:
- Being male
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Alternative And Complementary Therapies
Many complementary and alternative medicine approaches for managing gout focus on diet, weight loss, and exercise.
Your risk of gout goes up when your diet is high in naturally occurring compounds called purines. When purines break down in the body, they cause uric acid to form. In most cases, people who have gout will still need medication even when they follow a diet for gout. That said, tweaking your diet can be a powerful way to help manage gout and gout symptoms. Some research suggests that food changes alone can lower your uric acid levels by up to 15 percent, according to the Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care.
The main principles of a gout diet are basically the same as those of any healthy diet: Reduce calorie consumption if you are overweight opt for unrefined carbohydrates like fruits, vegetables, and whole grains limit your intake of sugar, organ meats , and saturated fats.
Know Your Uric Acid Level And Aim For It To Be Less Than 036 Mmol/l
- If you have two or more attacks of gout per year, medication to lower the uric acid level in the blood is recommended along with regular blood testing.
- The goal of treatment is to reduce the blood uric acid level below 0.36 mmol/L.
- If this low level is maintained, the gout crystals gradually dissolve, and gout attacks will be prevented.
- If you are prescribed medications to reduce the uric acid, take these every day, even when you are feeling well.
- The most common medication for this is allopurinol which stops uric acid forming.
- This medicine must be taken long term, often for years, to lower your uric acid into the normal range, and keep it there.
- Once this occurs, further attacks of gout will be prevented, as long as the medicine is continued.
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Tips For Preventing A Gout Flare
Gout affects 8 million Americans, mostly men between the ages of 30 and 50, along with women who have reached menopause. It can impact any joint, but often begins in a big toe. You might have pain so severe even a sock or a sheet touching your foot is agonizing. If this sounds like the pain you endure from gout, its time to make some changes.
At Ankle & Foot Associates, LLC, with 16 locations across southern Georgia and South Carolina, our team of experienced podiatrists can help you manage your gout with lifestyle modifications and medication if needed. Theyre here to offer you these five tips for preventing a painful gout flare-up.
Related Conditions And Causes Of Gout
Other conditions that are sometimes confused with gout include:
- Reactive arthritis
- Infectious arthritis
- Psoriatic arthritis
- Rheumatoid arthritis , which occurs when the body releases too many inflammatory chemicals . Gout is caused by too much uric acid.
- Osteoarthritis , known as wear-and-tear arthritis.
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Whats The Outlook For People With Gout
Untreated gout can lead to permanent joint damage. The buildup of uric acid in the joints and soft tissue is called tophus. Some people with gout can also develop other health problems, such as severe arthritis, kidney stones and heart disease. Its important to discuss your symptoms with a healthcare provider.
Managing A Gout Flare
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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Who Is Affected By Gout
Gout can affect anyone. It usually occurs earlier in men than women. It generally occurs after menopause in women. Men can be three times more likely than women to get it because they have higher levels of uric acid most of their lives. Women reach these uric acid levels after menopause.
People are more likely to get gout if they have:
- Obesity, or a lot of extra weight.
You are also more likely to develop gout if you:
- Consume a diet high in animal proteins
- Consume a significant amount of alcohol
- Are on water pills .
What Happens If Gout Is Left Untreated
If gout is not treated, it can cause permanent damage to your joints and harm your kidneys. Attacks will happen again and more joints will be affected. Lumps can grow on your elbows, hands and feet. The lumps can become sore and swollen and they may cause skin ulcers. The natural padding between the bones will start to wear away and the joints will become sore and stiff. Kidney stones can form and cause pain and damage to your kidneys.
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Treatment For Gout And Gout Attacks
As soon as youve been diagnosed with gout, your doctor will aim to reduce your pain ASAP. In May 2020, the American College of Rheumatology updated its guidelines for gout treatment for the first time in eight years. There is more evidence in support of early diagnosis and treatment treat-to-target protocols and allopurinol as a first-line agent.
Gout Can Go Awayor Return Again And Again
Gout attacks almost always result in stabbing pain, redness, and swelling in a joint. In men, about 50% of first-time gout attacks involve a big toe joint.1 Other commonly affected joints include the instep, heel, ankle, and knee.2
See Gout Symptoms
After the first gout attack, the condition can affect people differently:
- Some people will go months or even years without having another gout attackor very rarely, they may never have another one again.
- Other people will begin to experience gout attacks regularly. Eventually, these flare-ups may become frequent and longer-lasting. Chronic gout can lead to permanent joint damage and result in disability. Thankfully, early and appropriate treatment of the underlying cause of gouthigh levels of uric acid in the bloodcan prevent joint damage.
Experts cant predict who will have a one-time attack versus chronic gout. If youve had an attack, its worth your time and effort to make changes that can help you avoid another painful flare-up.
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The Standard Value Range For Lowering Uric Acid Is:
Patients with a history of gout attacks should control uric acid below 360umol/L those who have formed tophi should reduce uric acid below 300umol/L.
At the same time, the dissolution process of tophi is relatively slow, so if you want to remove gout stones, you need to ensure that the tophi is not destroyed and infected.
How Long Does A Gout Attack Last
Once a gout attack begins, the symptoms tend to intensify over the next eight to twelve hours. Once the symptoms have reached their peak, they will ease after a few days and ultimately resolve within a week to ten days. Initial attacks will generally resolve with or without treatment. Subsequent attacks tend to require dedicated treatment. Regardless, it is recommended that you seek treatment as soon as you suspect you may be dealing with gout in order to help relieve symptoms and manage pain, and to avoid potential long term damage to the joint.
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What Are The Treatment Drugs For Gout How To Prevent The Occurrence Of Gout
According to surveys, the number of patients with hyperuricemia in my country today has reached 170 million, of which 80 million are gout patients, and gout has become the second largest metabolic disease in my country after diabetes, and it is increasing at 9.7% per year. The average annual growth rate of China is growing rapidly.
Therefore, many patients are eager to learn about the treatment of gout. So, lets take a look with the editor!
What Foods Are High In Purines And Why Should I Avoid Them
In your body, uric acid is made from the breakdown of chemicals called purines, which come from the foods we eat. Some foods have more purines than others. It’s important to eat a balanced diet and include a variety of healthy foods in your diet, but to avoid eating too many foods that are high in purines. Eating these foods can trigger an attack of gout.
Examples of foods that have high purine content are:
- seafood, such as mussels and other shellfish, crab, fish roe, whitebait and trout
- game such as venison and rabbit
- offal such as liver, kidneys, heart and sweetbreads
- meat and yeast extracts such as Marmite, Bovril and commercial gravy.
A number of vegetables such as such as asparagus, mushrooms, cauliflower and spinach are also rich in purines, but these appear less likely to trigger gout than shellfish and game meats.Most people taking medicines to reduce uric acid levels find they can still eat purine-rich foods without attacks of gout by being careful with how much they eat.
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Ways To Avoid A Gout Flare
Goutif you’ve had it once, you don’t want to have it again. Luckily, this painful joint condition can often be avoided, if you’re careful. We’ve got 10 tips to help you avoid a gout recurrence.
“Gout is a kind of arthritis that occurs when uric acid builds up in blood and causes joint inflammation,” according to the National Institutes of Health. Uric acid is a byproduct leftover after the body metabolizes substances called purines, which are present in certain foods and drinks. Most of the time, purines pass out of the body in urine, but when the body gets too much or can’t get rid of it properly, the result is gout.
The NIH says there are two types of gout:
- Acute gout is a painful condition that typically affects one joint.
- Chronic gout is repeated episodes of pain and inflammation, which may involve more than one joint.
Since one attack is bad enough, here’s how to dial down recurrent episodes:
1. Avoid alcohol, especially beer and wine and never indulge in binge drinking.
2. Avoid purine-rich foods or eat them sparingly. These include:
- organ meats
3. Talk to a nutritionist or dietician to help you design a diet that does not include purine rich foods but still includes all the nutrients you need.
4. Reduce your meat intake. Many types of fish are low in purine.
5. Avoid fatty foods such as salad dressings, ice cream, and fried foods.