Friday, October 7, 2022

What Causes Gout In Hands

What Can Increase Your Risk

GOUT explained | Gout in the hand, foot or knee | Gouty Arthritis

A high level of uric acid in the blood is the main factor that increases your risk of developing gout. However, it’s still uncertain why some people with a high level of uric acid in the blood develop gout, while others with an equally high level don’t.

Other factors that may increase your risk of developing gout are outlined below.

Can You Get Gout In Your Hands

You may find gout mostly attack your knees, big toe, and feet. However, there is also a risk of gout symptoms in your hands. You may feel painful soreness in your hands.

Gout is a complicated type of arthritis with crystals forming in a joint. Swelling and redness are major symptoms of inflammation, causing severe pain.

According to physicians and therapists, gouts affect both joints and soft tissues . In most cases, the middle joint of your hands has a gout attack. You will find your joint becoming swollen and painful due to the production of uric acid.

In normal conditions, when you consume drinks and foods, your blood carries uric acid, which comes out of your urine. However, the accumulation and crystallization of this acid in joints will cause gouts. You must avoid eating red meats and seafood. Alcohol consumption also results in gout in your hands.

What Is Gout Its Causes

Gout is actually a type is arthritis that happens due to hyperuricemia, a condition where blood uric acid level increases more the normal level. So, what happens when uric acid increases in our body?

Uric acid present in the blood gets ionized into Monosodium Urate Crystal. Normally these urate crystal gets dissolved and its solubility is affected by:

  • Synovial fluid pH,
  • Electrolytes level, and
  • Other synovial components such as proteoglycans and collagen.

But, when the level of uric acid increases the urate crystal starts deposition gets starts in the tissue around the joints leading to gout. There are two factors that causes the increase in the uric acid level one is overproduction of uric acid and second condition is when there is decreased excretion of uric acid from the body.

Read Also: Is Rice Good For Gout

How Is Gout Diagnosed

If your doctor suspects gout, they may take a sample of fluid from the joint with a thin needle and send it to a laboratory for tests. Urate in the fluid might be seen with a microscope.

A blood test may also show elevated levels of uric acid . While it’s not usually used to diagnose gout, an x-ray may be used for people with gout that comes back to assess how much damage has been done to the affected joint.

Often, the diagnosis of gout is obvious, especially if you have had gout before. If you have not had gout before, or you are not sure what is causing your symptoms, see your doctor.

Differences Between Men And Women

The Hand Of A Patient Affected By Gout Photograph by Dr P ...

Sex differences play a role in which joints are affected:

  • In men, about 85% of gout flare-ups affect joints in the lower extremities. About 50% of first-time gout attacks involve a big toe joint.8
  • In women, a gout attack is most likely to occur in a knee.10 In addition, women may be more likely to get gout in the upper extremities.9

While women are less likely to get gout, they are more likely to have multiple joints affected by gout.13

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Why Does It Occur In The Hands

Gout can affect any joint in the body. However, it occurs more commonly in certain joints, such as the toe, ankle, and knee. If gout progresses without treatment, or a person is unable to manage the condition, it can affect multiple other joints, such as the fingers and hands.

Similar to other joints, gout in the hands occurs due to an accumulation of uric acid in the blood, which results in the formation of uric acid crystals that collect in the joints. Uric acid is a waste product that usually forms when the body breaks down substances known as purines. These substances are present in many foods, such as liver, shellfish, and alcohol.

The kidneys are usually capable of filtering uric acid from the blood and eliminating it in the urine. However, if a person produces too much uric acid, or the kidneys are not functioning correctly, uric acid can accumulate in the blood and form uric acid crystals. After a long period, these crystals can deposit and build up in the joints, forming tophi.

treat and manage gout with medications and self-management strategies. A doctor will usually suggest treatment plans to help control the symptoms and prevent future flares. For example, they may recommend the use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs , such as ibuprofen . Alternatively, they might suggest a steroid medication or an anti-inflammatory drug, such as colchicine , to help manage pain.

How Can An Attack Of Gout Be Treated

The management of an acute attack of gout is very different from the prevention of subsequent attacks.

Treatments used for prevention, such as allopurinol can actually make things worse if given during an attack, and so need to be held back until the attack has resolved for several weeks.

There are a number of measures that can help resolve an attack of gout. See Table 2 for summary of treatment strategies for acute gout. One principle is that treatment for an attack of gout should be instituted quickly, since quick treatment can often be rewarded with a quick improvement.

If an attack of gout is allowed to last more than a day or so before treatment is started, the response to treatment may be much slower.

Table 2: Medications to treat acute attacks of gout

  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or COX-2 inhibitorsExamples of : Naproxen 500mg twice daily, indomethacin 25mg three times daily. Example of COX-2 inhibitor: celecoxib 200mg twice a day. Possible side-effects: Elevation of blood pressure, ankle swelling, upset stomach, ulcer . Use with caution if kidney or liver problems.
  • Anti-Inflammatory corticosteroidsExamples of : Prednisone 40mg first day, 30mg 2nd day, 20mg third day, 10mg fourth day. Possible side-effects: Elevation of blood pressure, elevation of blood sugar, mood changes. Short-term use, as in gout, generally much better tolerated than long-term use. Use with caution if diabetic.
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    Preventing Future Gout Attacks

    Maintaining more alkaline body chemistry is the way to avoid gout symptoms in the hands after the current attack has been extinguished. While the viable methods vary, common to all of them is good breathing and blood oxygenation, consistent hydration, and a healthy diet of mostly alkaline-forming foods fresh fruits and vegetables.

    Avoiding all types of processed foods and fast foods is mandatory as they are one of the sure causes of gout.

    Remember! The symptoms of gout in the hands have to be dealt with as soon as they present themselves.

    Treating A Gout Attack

    Gout and Your Hands

    Treating an attack of gout doesnt lower your urate levels or stop future attacks. The treatment helps you to manage your symptoms when an attack happens.

    The most commonly used drug treatments for attacks of gout are:

    Some people will be better suited to NSAIDS, while others will be suited to colchicine. But your preference is also taken into consideration many people with gout quickly learn what works best for them.

    In cases where one drug doesnt seem to be working on its own, your doctor might suggest a combination of NSAIDs with either colchicine or steroids.

    Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs

    Attacks of gout are often treated with NSAID tablets, which can help with pain and reduce some of your inflammation. Ibuprofen, Naproxen and diclofenac are three NSAIDs you could be given.

    If youve been prescribed NSAIDs to treat an attack, you should start taking them as soon as you notice signs of one coming on. Your doctor may let you keep a supply so you can start taking them at the first signs of an attack.

    The earlier you start treatment, the better.

    NSAIDs arent suitable for everyone, so talk to your doctor about them first if you have any other conditions. They can also interact with other drugs, so make sure you talk to a doctor before starting on any new medication.

    Colchicine

    Colchicine isnt a painkiller, but can be very effective at reducing the inflammation caused by urate crystals.

    Colchicine tablets can cause diarrhoea or stomach aches.

    Steroids

    Read Also: Side Effects Of Allopurinol And Alcohol

    What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of Gout

    Gout flares start suddenly and can last days or weeks. These flares are followed by long periods of remissionweeks, months, or yearswithout symptoms before another flare begins. Gout usually occurs in only one joint at a time. It is often found in the big toe. Along with the big toe, joints that are commonly affected are the lesser toe joints, the ankle, and the knee.

    Symptoms in the affected joint may include:

    • Pain, usually intense

    Signs And Symptoms Of Gout

    Any joint can be affected by gout, but it usually affects joints towards the ends of the limbs, such as the toes, ankles, knees and fingers.

    Signs and symptoms of gout include:

    • severe pain in one or more joints
    • the joint feeling hot and very tender
    • swelling in and around the affected joint
    • red, shiny skin over the affected joint

    Symptoms develop rapidly over a few hours and typically last three to 10 days. After this time the pain should pass and the joint should return to normal.

    Almost everyone with gout will experience further attacks at some point, usually within a year.

    Read more about the complications of gout.

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    How Can I Self

    The methods of managing an acute attack of gout differ from the ongoing methods for managing gout. If youve been diagnosed with gout, youll benefit in the long term from making healthy changes to your lifestyle, such as:

    • maintaining a healthy body weight. If you do need to lose weight, make sure your weight loss is gradual as crash diets can increase uric acid levels
    • drinking alcohol in moderation and avoiding binge drinking
    • drinking plenty of water, and staying hydrated
    • avoiding, or eating in moderation, foods that are high in purines. Talk with a dietitian for tips and advice
    • exercising regularly aim to complete at least 30 minutes of physical activity most days of the week
    • working closely with your GP to prevent further attacks and actively manage your condition.

    Who Should Diagnose And Treat Gout

    Gout tophus on finger

    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.

    Also Check: Allopurinol And Alcohol Interaction

    Severe Cases Of Gout In Hands

    Chronic cases of gout can lead to the development of bumps under the skin and near the affected joint area. These visible bumps are known as tophi and are uric acid deposits that resemble small, chalky nodules.

    Over time, the continued growth of tophi can lead to grotesque deformities of the joints. Needless to say, these deformities create additional complications like limited movement, ulcerations, necrosis and nerve compression, to name a few.

    For chronic cases of gout tophi, getting them surgically removed by a doctor is usually recommended.

    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.

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    How Can I Manage My Gout And Improve My Quality Of Life

    Gout affects many aspects of daily living, including work and leisure activities. Fortunately, there are many low-cost self-management strategies that are proven to improve the quality of life of people with gout.

    For gout in particular:

    • Eat a healthy diet. Avoid foods that may trigger a gout flare, including foods high in purines , and limit alcohol intake .

    CDCs Arthritis Program recommends five self-management strategies for managing arthritis and its symptoms. These can help with gout as well.

  • Talk to your doctor. You can play an active role in controlling your arthritis by attending regular appointments with your health care provider and following your recommended treatment plan. This is especially important if you also have other chronic conditions, like diabetes or heart disease.
  • Lose weight. For people who are overweight or obese, losing weight reduces pressure on joints, particularly weight bearing joints like the hips and knees. Reaching or maintaining a healthy weight can relieve pain, improve function, and slow the progression of arthritis.
  • Protect your joints. Joint injuries can cause or worsen arthritis. Choose activities that are easy on the joints like walking, bicycling, and swimming. These low-impact activities have a low risk of injury and do not twist or put too much stress on the joints. Learn more about how to exercise safely with arthritis.
  • Treatment For Gout In Hands

    Gout Overview | Causes and Prevention | Johns Hopkins Medicine

    Through a combination of diet and medication, gout can be easily managed.

    Just like for other joints, gout in the hands can be treated with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen and the prescription anti-inflammatory medicationscolchicine and/or indomethacin.

    Dont dismiss good old-fashioned ice and rest for alleviating your pain and discomfort.

    Intentionally making certain dietary choices, like severely limiting your alcohol consumption and sugar, can also make all the difference in your gout treatment.

    Additionally, you can start exercising regularly to try and overcome your gout symptoms.

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    Gout Attack Vs Chronic Gout

    It is possible to have a gout flare-up and never experience another. Repeated instances of acute gout are called chronic gout17.

    The treatment goals for a gout attack are different than those for chronic gout. When treating a gout attack, the goal is to relieve pain and inflammation. When treating chronic gout, the goal is to prevent future gout attacks and long-term joint damage.

    While some people with chronic gout may get frequent gout attacks, others may have years in between attacks. If chronic gout is not treated, attacks may become more frequent and/or last longer.

    Left untreated, a gout attack will usually resolve itself within a few days or weeks. Chronic gout can permanently damage a joints tissues and decrease its range of motion. For this reason, it is important to recognize symptoms, understand risk factors, get an accurate diagnosis, and treat and prevent gout.

    Top 37 Effective Home Remedies For Gout In Hands And Feet

    1. Apple Cider Vinegar

    Besides using apple cider vinegar as a remedy for headaches and stomachaches, people often use it as one of the natural home remedies for gout. Due to its anti-inflammatory properties, apple cider vinegar can help assuage the soreness and pain related to a gout attack. Besides, it helps to break the uric acid deposits. Vinegar consumption may also enhance insulin sensitivity in those without and with diabetes .

    Method 1:

    • Take one teaspoon of raw and unfiltered apple cider vinegar and put it in a glass.
    • Add some water to it.
    • Consume the mixture 3 times every day.

    Method 2:

    • Soak a cloth in some apple cider vinegar.
    • Secure it to the joints which are affected by gout. Leave it overnight to relieve pain.
    • Do this every day.
    • Put some apple cider vinegar in a spray bottle.
    • Place the bottle in the freezer for a few minutes.
    • Spray the apple cider vinegar over the areas affected by gout every hour.
    2. Ginger Root

    Ginger root contains anti-inflammatory compounds to combat joint inflammation in gout. According to a study, topical ginger may reduce pain associated with uric acid in gout. Besides, ginger may help reduce levels of uric acid .

    Method 1:

    • Take the powder of fenugreek, turmeric and ginger root in equal amounts.
    • Add some warm water to the mixture.
    • Consume the mixture 2 times every day.

    Method 2:

    • Consume raw ginger root every day or add it in your daily dish.

    Method 3:

    Method 4:

    3. Baking Soda

    Here is what you can do with baking soda to save you from gout.

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    Can Gout Be Prevented

    Some people with gout experience recurrent attacks, which may be prevented by using prescription medications. These medicines work by lowering uric acid levels in the blood. The most commonly used is allopurinol. This helps to lower uric acid levels by reducing the body’s production of uric acid.

    You can also reduce your chance of having further attacks of gout by adopting some sensible lifestyle changes, such as:

    • reducing alcohol intake avoid binge drinking, in particular
    • gradually losing weight if you are overweight, while avoiding fad diets
    • eating a healthy, balanced diet
    • drinking plenty of water, especially when at risk of dehydration

    There is no scientific evidence that particular foods cause gout, but some studies have shown that people who are prone to gout are more likely to eat foods rich in purines a substance that’s converted into uric acid within the body.

    Foods with high levels of purines include:

    • red meat and offal such as liver, kidneys and heart
    • seafood, especially shellfish, scallops, mussels, herring, mackerel, sardines and anchovies
    • foods containing yeast such as Vegemite and beer

    It’s best to seek the advice of your doctor or an accredited practising dietitian before making any changes to your diet. Most people with gout find that a healthy, balanced diet along with medication is enough to reduce their uric acid levels.

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