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.
Who Is At Risk Of Gout
Gout is sometimes called the disease of kings because of a false link to overindulgence in food and alcohol. Anyone can get the condition, but certain factors can increase your risk:
- Gender: Males are more likely to get gout than females.
- Age: Middle-aged and older men and women after menopause are more at risk for gout.
- Family history
- Diet: A diet high in purines, which are broken down into uric acid, can lead to gout. High purine foods include meats like bacon, turkey, veal, venison, and liver, and seafood like anchovies, sardines, mussels, codfish, scallops, trout, and haddock. High fructose foods and drinks such as soda pop also can increase your risk.
- Alcohol use
Using Tart Cherry Juice For Gout
Tart cherry juice may help decrease uric acid levels and inflammation in gout. Research is limited, with often small numbers of study participants and short-term follow-up.
Nevertheless, a 2019 review of six studies that looked at the effect of cherry juice or cherry extract intake on gout concluded that cherry intake was associated with a reduced risk of gout attacks. Researchers did note that larger, more long-term studies are needed to clarify this association.
When choosing tart cherry juice, be sure to look for unsweetened varieties to help reduce the amount of added sugar in your diet.
Recommended Reading: Is Beans Good For Gout
Which Foods Are Safe For Gout
Find out which foods to eat and which to avoid if you have gout.
Question: I havegout. Can you tell me which fruits, vegetables, meats or seafoods I should eat or avoid? Is there any type of alcohol wine, beer, spirits that is better or worse for me than others?
Answer: Dietary management of gout is very restrictive and doesnt always work to control gout, so a combination of medication and diet may be the best way to treat your gout. In addition to medications that treat the inflammation and other symptoms that occur during a gout attack, medications exist that can treat the underlying metabolic condition of hyperuricemia too much uric acid in the blood.Hyperuricemia can occur either when the body produces too much uric acid or when the body does not excrete enough uric acid. Drugs exist to treat both causes.
Purine compounds, whether produced in the body or from eating high-purine foods, can raise uric acid levels. Excess uric acid can produce uric acid crystals, which then build up in soft tissues and joints, causing the painful symptoms of gout. Dietary management focuses on reducing the amount of uric acid in the system and attaining and maintaining a healthy bodyweight.
The primary dietary modification traditionally recommended is a low-purine diet. Avoiding purines completely is impossible, but strive to limit them. You can learn by trial and error what your personal limit is and which foods cause you problems.
High-Purine Foods Include:
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.
You May Like: Uric Acid Flush For Gout
Treatment For Gout In The Foot Pain Relief
We covered off a lot of this in our article on gout pain treatments, except to add that where your feet are concerned, if you feel a gout attack just about to start, you may be better gently applying an anti-inflammatory topical cream if your toes/ heel are not too painful.
This will potentially get to the source much faster than swallowing a tablet.
Other than that, the effect of painkillers is fairly universal, so doesnt warrant special coverage here.
2) Ice Treatment
Where your foot is concerned, ice treatment is a great option for slowing down the blood flow and reducing the swelling/ bruising that will cause much of your pain. This is also easy to apply any standard water-based foot massager can be filled with cold water and you just pop your foot in to soak.
Ideally you should add ice to the water, although never put ice directly on your skin as it could cause burns.
Alternatively, pop a towel in the freezer and leave it for an hour, then get it out and gently wrap it around your affected foot. A bag of frozen vegetables is another option but can squash your foot, leading to a trauma and extra pain.
This is perhaps the 2nd best treatment for gout in the foot as it is easy to do, required little extra equipment and can potentially be carried out at work in an office if you are really suffering.
3) Supportive Equipment
This is especially true if you get gout in both feet a walking stick will typically only take pressure off one side.
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.
Don’t Miss: Can I Eat Pasta With Gout
Which Foods Cause Gout
Foods high in purines from animal and seafood sources are thought to be a key element of increasing uric acid precursors. Interestingly, purines can also be found in high concentrations in vegetables such as beans and mushrooms, but these have not been found to be related to the risk of hyperuricemia.
New evidence over the last decade has shown that some of the foods that were previously thought to be associated with gout, like meat, may not have such a strong relationship as originally thought. Overall, your gout risk may be raised by consuming large quantities of:
- Some seafoods, like shellfish, shrimp, tuna, mussels, lobster, sardines and salmon
- Red meats like bacon, liver, beef, pork, turkey, veal and lamb
- High-fructose corn syrup, which is often found in processed foods including biscuits, syrups, chutneys and sauces, though the evidence is mixed on this one with only one American study finding a relationship between high consumption and gout
Before you decide to cut out food groups from the list above, according to Arthritis Australia, there is little evidence that avoiding these purine-rich foods can significantly reduce gout attacks and by cutting them out, you may miss out on important vitamins and minerals, particularly when it comes to meats and seafood. We recommend making these decisions together with your GP, dietitian or nutritionist.
What Increases Your Chances For Gout
The following make it more likely that you will develop hyperuricemia, which causes gout:
- Being male
Read Also: Can You Eat Salmon If You Have Gout
How You Can Manage And Prevent Foot Gout
Regardless of whether you have ever suffered from gout, you should know that managing the condition is not as simple as taking medication during a flare-up. You should talk with your healthcare provider about your lifestyle, diet, and overall health.
You may need to make changes in your lifestyle to prevent recurrence. You should always keep personal records of gout attacks to discuss with your doctor.
Exercising, eating healthy, maintaining an average weight, and avoiding things that increase your uric acid levels are all essential to preventing and managing gout.
What Causes Gout Of The Foot
Gout of the foot is a type of arthritis that often affects the joint at the bottom of the big toe, causing severe pain even when there is no pressure on the foot. This condition is caused when uric acid builds up in the body. If uric acid accumulates in the fluids that surround a joint and forms crystals, the crystals aggravate the joint, causing pain and swelling.
In the past, gout was called the “disease of kings” because it seemed that only royal or noble families were wealthy enough to afford the types foods and amounts of alcohol that were thought to cause it. In fact, during certain time periods, and as recently as the turn of the 20th century, having gout added to a person’s social prestige. Today, while changes in diet may be part of the treatment recommended for gout, medications are also used treat it. In addition, having gout does not have the prestige that it did in the past.
Although the mechanics of how gout of the foot develops are known, the exact causes are less understood. It occurs more commonly in men than in women, although the odds of a woman developing gout increase after she becomes postmenopausal. There is evidence that the condition may have a genetic factor and run in families. Drinking alcohol and taking certain types of water pills may also increase the risks of developing gout.
Read Also: 10 Foods That Cause Gout Flare Ups
Where Can I Get Advice About My Diet
An accredited practising dietitian can provide you with personalised advice to give you the confidence to eat in a way that is best for you. APDs are university-qualified experts in nutrition and dietetics and are committed to the Dietitians Association of Australias Code of Professional Conduct, continuing professional development and providing quality services.
Diabetes And The Feet
If you have diabetes, it’s critical to keep your blood glucose levels as close as possible to the target your doctor has set. If you eat too much sugar and let those numbers get out of control, you may experience nerve damage, which makes it difficult for you to feel sores or blisters on your feet. If these become infected and your blood flow is also poor because of glucose buildup, the blisters may never heal, and they could result in gangrene, which is deadened tissue.
You May Like: Is Fried Chicken Bad For Gout
High Purine Vegetables Are Ok
Some vegetables and plant foods, such as peas, beans, lentils, spinach, mushrooms, oats, and cauliflower, are high in purines. However, several studies have shown that they do not increase the risk of gout.
In fact, the opposite seems to be true, with a vegetable-rich diet being associated with a lower risk of gout compared with the lower consumption of vegetables. Therefore, you do not need to limit or avoid any vegetables on a gout-friendly diet.
Diagnostic Evaluation Of Gout In Foot
What goes into a gout diagnosis? These procedures are options:
- Joint aspiration. Fluid is withdrawn from the joint and inspected for crystals and bacteria.
- Blood tests. White blood cell count, ESR , triglycerides, and kidney function may be elevated.
- X-ray. An x-ray of the affected joint is likely to appear normal during an initial acute episode, but in chronic gout, bone erosion and overhanging edges may be seen.
Recommended Reading: How Long Does A Gout Flare Up Last
Shopping List For Gout
What to put in your cart and what to pass up when planning your gout diet.
A diet to lower uric acid levels, along with medications prescribed by your doctor, makes gout one of the most controllable forms of arthritis. While you should always discuss the merits and drawbacks of specific foods with your doctor, use this shopping checklist as a general guide to food choices to improve your overall health, lower uric acid levels and reduce your risk of painful gout attacks. Put in Your Cart
- Skim milk.
- Low-fat dairy products .
- Whole-grain products .
- Plant oils .
- Vitamin C supplements .
- Coffee .
- Water bottles .
- Red meat and organ meats .
- Shellfish such as shrimp and lobster.
- Refined carbohydrates .
- Processed foods .
- Sugary beverages.
- Alcohol .
Shopping for Arthritis-Friendly Foods
New Guidelines for Treating Gout
Which Foods are Safe for Gout?
Connect with Others
Diagnosed With Gout?
Get the latest news and tips about living with Gout in the Live Yes! Arthritis Network newsletter.
- 1355 Peachtree St NE Suite 600
- Atlanta, GA 30309
Arthritis Foundation is a qualified 501 EIN 58-1341679
What Is Gout In Foot
Foot gout is a very common occurrence among gout sufferers. You probably had your very first flare in this area or have heard accounts from fellow sufferers who experienced the same. This is because gout commonly occurs in the big toe. Yes, it can affect other joints, but for the most part, gout targets the foot.
There is a similar condition to foot gout called hallux limitus. Its important not to confuse the two. They are both arthritis conditions, and the only difference is that hallux limitus is caused by the decomposition of cartilage around the big toe joint. With gout, however, the arthritis is caused by a buildup of uric acid in the blood which then gets deposited in the joint
Don’t Miss: What Does Gout Feel Like In Your Feet
Why Uric Acid Levels Rise
Uric acid is a waste product. You end up with high uric acid levels for two reasons: your body produces too much, or your kidneys remove too little. Several factors increase your chances of having high levels of uric acid, such as:
- Being overweight or obese
- Being male, especially between 30-50 years of age
- Having a family history of gout
- Undergoing a trauma or surgery
Because uric acid is a byproduct of purine, your diet also plays a significant role in your chances of having gout.
Should I Drink Lots Of Water
Dehydration may be a risk factor for gout although this is not well proven in research. Drinking 1 1.5 litres of fluids a day is recommended for general health benefits. However if you are taking diuretics or have heart or kidney problems, talk to your doctor about the right amount of fluids for you to drink.
You May Like: Where Does Gout Attack The Foot
How Is Gout Treated
Gout can be effectively treated and managed with medical treatment and self-management strategies. Your health care provider may recommend a medical treatment plan to
- Manage the pain of a flare. Treatment for flares consists of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen, steroids, and the anti-inflammatory drug colchicine.
- Prevent future flares. Making changes to your diet and lifestyle, such as losing weight, limiting alcohol, eating less purine-rich food , may help prevent future attacks. Changing or stopping medications associated with hyperuricemia may also help.
- Prevent tophi and kidney stones from forming as a result of chronic high levels of uric acid. Tophi are hard, uric acid deposits under the skin. For people with frequent acute flares or chronic gout, doctors may recommend preventive therapy to lower uric acid levels in the blood using drugs like allopurinol, febuxostat, and pegloticase.
In addition to medical treatment, you can manage your gout with self-management strategies. Self-management is what you do day to day to manage your condition and stay healthy, like making healthy lifestyle choices. The self-management strategies described below are proven to reduce pain and disability, so you can pursue the activities important to you.
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.
Recommended Reading: Diet For Gout And Kidney Stones
Should I Cut Out Purine
There is very little scientific proof that avoiding the purine-rich foods listed above can successfully reduce gout attacks. You may miss out on important nutrients and vitamins by completely cutting these foods from your diet.
If you notice certain foods trigger your gout attacks, you may benefit from cutting down the amounts of those foods in your diet. However not all purine-rich foods are thought to cause gout. For example, a number of vegetables are also rich in purines but appear less likely to cause gout than diets containing meat and shellfish.
Dairy foods, which can contain purines, actually appear to lower the risk of gout. For most people with gout, a healthy balanced diet is all that is needed, alongside medicines to reduce uric acid levels. 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 the quantity they eat.