Gout Attacks: Pain Relief
Gout attacks are one of the most painful joint problems. Anti-inflammatory painkillers and steroids can help relieve the pain. The gout medication colchicine is another option but it has a slower effect.
Gout is caused by high uric acid levels. If the amount of uric acid in the body is too high, crystals may start to form in the joints and cause a painful gout attack. The pain and swelling are usually at their worst 6 to 12 hours after an attack starts. It usually takes about a week for the swelling to go down and the joint to recover. Acute pain can be relieved with anti-inflammatory painkillers or short-term steroid treatment. These medications start working within one hour.
Home Remedies And Lifestyle
Gout symptoms are caused by the excessive accumulation of uric acid, a condition known as hyperuricemia. Over time, the build-up can lead to the formation of uric acid crystals in and around a joint, triggering severe and protracted bouts of pain and inflammation.
As such, gout treatment is focused on two things: the reduction of uric acid and the alleviation of gout pain.
Treatments For Big Toe Gout
Remedies for gout has proven to be successful after a wide range of research. There are two major parts to treating gout. They include :- 1) treating the acute gout attack and 2) treatment for prevention of future attacks.
Treating acute gout attack: This treatment only helps to manage your symptoms in the event of an attack. The common drugs used for treating gout attacks are:
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs : These drugs help to reduce pain and inflammation. Examples are ibuprofen, diclofenac, and naproxen. However, NSAIDs may not be suitable for everyone. There re other alternative options that work like NSAIDs.
Colchicine: This is another drug you can take in place of NSAIDs. It is also effective in reducing the inflammation caused by uric acid crystals. If you have chronic kidney disease, avoid taking colchicine as it causes diarrhea or stomach pain.
Steroids: These are drugs you can take if you are at risk of side effects of NSAIDs and colchicine.
For managing a gout attack at home, you can adopt the PRICE therapy. Rest Rest the affected joint, that is, the big toe joint
Ice-Make sure to ice the joint area immediately after sustaining the attack to reduce the swelling. Apply cold packs for about 20 minutes at a time, and do this several times a day.
Compression Wrap the area of the joint with a compression bandage to prevent further swelling.
Elevation Raise the joint area and support with a soft object like a pillow.
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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
Medications For Acute Gout
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How Will Gout Affect Me
Attacks can vary from person to person. Some people only have an attack every few years, while others have attacks every few months.
Without medication attacks tend to happen more often and other joints can become affected.
Having high urate levels and gout for a long time can lead to other health problems, including:
- narrowing of the arteries which can lead to an increased risk of stroke or heart attacks or other heart problems
- osteoarthritis, which occurs when the urate crystals and hard tophi cause joint damage.
- an increased risk of developing kidney disease or worsening of the condition if you already have it
- kidney stones
- an increased risk of some cancers, especially prostate cancer
- mental health problems, including depression
- underactive thyroid
- erectile dysfunction in men.
If you take medication to lower your urate levels, and have a healthy diet and lifestyle, most of the damage and complications caused by gout can be stopped.
Treatments for gout are incredibly successful. There are two main parts to treating gout, which are:
- treating the acute attack
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Celery Or Celery Seeds
Celery is a food traditionally used to treat urinary issues. For gout, extract and seeds of the vegetable have become popular home remedies.
Experimental use is well-documented, though scientific research is scant. Its thought that celery may reduce inflammation.
Adequate celery amounts for treating gout arent documented. Try eating celery many times per day, especially raw celery sticks, juice, extract, or seeds.
If purchasing an extract or supplement, follow label directions closely.
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The Role Of Physical Activity In Prevention Of Gout
Along with diet, physical activity can help with weight loss, and gout has been associated with being overweight.7 in patients with well-established gout, especially if X-rays have demonstrated joint damage in the foot, a low-impact exercise program is reasonable. An exercise program combined with diet in gout can reduce risk for attacks.7 If an attack seems to be coming on in the lower extremity, patients are well-advised to try to get off their feet, since impact seems to worsen gout attacks. Clues to an attack of gout coming on include local swelling, heat, redness, and tenderness in a joint, especially in the foot, ankle, or knee. Some patients have fever and chills as the first warning that an attack of gout is coming on.
Where Does A Gout Attack Occur
Gout often attacks the largest joint in your big toe. However, it can also attack the foot, ankle knees, hands, or wrists. Intense pain, redness, and swelling can start with no warning, although you may have warning signs of an impending attack. If you start to feel tingling, burning, or itching in a joint, your body is giving you a warning signal that a flare-up is imminent.
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What Are The Main Causes Of Gout
Gout is the outcome of an unplanned diet that increases the uric acid level. It started with simple symptoms like mild pain or redness in the joint but turn complex in no time.
Apart from diet, there are lots of factors that play a vital part in spreads out gouts. Let us check the cause:
- Intake of food like red meat, selfish, etc.
- To consume too much alcohol.
- If anyone develops a joint injury.
- If anyone is suffering from kidney diseases or thyroid and could not eliminate the uric acid from the body properly.
- Not drinking sufficient water.
Elevating The Affected Joints
Gout can cause pain and swelling, especially in the feet, hands, knees, and ankles.
One way to reduce swelling is by elevating the affected joints. This encourages blood and fluid to move away from the joint and back toward the heart.
A person can also use an ice-pack in combination with elevation to reduce their gout symptoms.
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How To Treat Gout In The Big Toe: What You Must Know
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The Role Of Medication In Prevention Of Gout
Table 3: Medications to pevent attacks of gout
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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What Other Information Should I Know
Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory. Your doctor may order certain lab tests to check your response to colchicine.
Do not let anyone else take your medication. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your prescription.
It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.
When To See A Foot Doctor About Gout:
- Sudden intense pain in a joint in your feet
- Lingering, discomfort from a few days to a few weeks
- Inflammation and redness the affected foot joint becomes swollen, tender, warm and red
- Limited range of motion in your feet
Gout that goes untreated can lead to worsening pain and joint damage
Seek medical care immediately if you have a fever and a joint is hot and inflamed, which can be a sign of infection.
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Home Remedies For Long
The American College of Rheumatology recommends a couple of lifestyle modifications for preventing future attacks of gout:
1) Lose weight if you need to. Being overweight can increase uric acid levels as well as put pressure on the joints.
2) Follow a low-purine diet. Another effective way to reduce uric acid levels is to follow a low-purine diet. Purines are organic compounds that break down into uric acid. Following a low-purine diet means avoiding the big four alcohol, shellfish, red meat, and high fructose corn syrup.
Limiting these foods is also beneficial for heart health and people with gout are at higher risk for heart disease.
But dont go overboard with dietary changes to relieve gout pain though, advises Dr. Fields. You can find lists of thousands of different foods youre not supposed to have if you have gout. Those recommendations are impossible to follow and can make you crazy.
What Causes Gout In Toes
Gout occurs due to the clustering of uric acid in the bloodstream and the formation of urate crystals in the joint space. The metabolism of purines gives rise to a waste product, uric acid.
It is processed in the kidneys and then eliminated through urine. If uric acid is produced in an extremely high amount, then it is not possible for the kidneys to flush it out.
Consumption of foods high in purines is responsible for elevated levels of uric acid in the body. If kidney functioning is affected due to renal conditions, then also the kidneys cannot eliminate uric acid.
Excessively increased uric acid gets accumulated in the blood to form crystals, which form deposition in the space around the joints of toes. It results in pain and inflammation in the affected joint.
Middle-aged people with a family history are more prone to develop gout. Obesity and excess alcoholism can also trigger gout attacks.
Certain health conditions, such as kidney disorders, thyroid diseases, hypertension, and diabetes, are found to be associated with gouty arthritis. Foods that contain rich amount of purines such as pork, organ meat, beef, seafood as well as alcoholic beverages can cause hyperuricemia, resulting in gout in toes.
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Pain And Swelling Are Gouts Calling Cards
The most frequent signs of a gout attack are swelling, tenderness, redness, and a sharp pain in your big toe. These attacks are most common at night when you are sitting still and laying flat on your back. While gout usually manifests in the big toe, you may also experience gout attacks in your foot, ankle, or knees. The attacks can be short or long, anywhere from a few days to weeks and you may not have another attack may for months or years.
Ways To Get Immediate Pain Relief From Gout
Gout is a type of arthritis condition that is caused by excess production of uric acid crystals in the joints. When metabolism breaks down the food, uric acid is produced from the cells and the food we eat. Kidneys filter the uric acid through the urine. A small part of the uric acid passes out from stool as well. So, if there is an excess production of uric acid, kidneys are not able to pass it out through urine or stool, and that is when it remains in the blood. The uric acid then gets deposited in the form of crystals in joints. When uric acid builds up in the body and gets deposited in joints, it forms gout. Gout is considered as one of the most painful forms of arthritis. Back in the day, it was a disease that occurred mostly in men who had crossed the age of 50, but now women and children too are affected by the same disease mainly because of the food habits and consumption of excess animal protein and fats.
In most cases, it is the big toe that gets affected by gout first. When there is a gout, the person will feel immense pain in that area. There is swelling, redness, heat, and stiffness in joints. Gout can affect a persons ankles, heels, knees, wrists, fingers, in steps, and elbows. The pain is usually very intense, and the affected person is not able to walk.
There are ways to treat gout, but not all methods give immediate pain relief from Gout. However, here are some methods to get an immediate pain relief:
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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 and reduce the risk of others.
Take Medicine You Have on Hand. Start treatment immediately with over-the-counter ibuprofen or naproxen , but never take aspirin, which can worsen a flare. If you have had a flare before and your doctor has prescribed an anti-inflammatory medication to take in the event of another, take your prescribed medication as your doctor directed. If you are already taking a uric acid-lowering drug to reduce the risk of flares, continue to take that drug.
Ice Down. Applying an ice pack to the painful joint may help ease pain and inflammation. Wrap a pack in a dish cloth and apply to the area for 20- to 30-minutes at a stretch several times a day.
Let your doctor know what is going on right away. She may prescribe a new medication, or have you come to the office for a joint fluid test or an injection of a corticosteroid to start relieving inflammation quickly. Getting treatment within the first 24 hours of the start of a flare can lessen its length and severity.
Get a Cane. Walking with a cane during an acute gou flare can help keep pressure off your painful joint.