What is it?
While many patients understand gout simply as the sudden pain that appears in the joint of their big toe, it is actually a complex derivation of arthritis. The aches and pains of this problem are a result of the buildup of uric acid in the body. As this compound begins to accumulate from the breakdown of purines in food, uric acid crystals will form. These sharp crystals will damage the soft tissues of the body and often cause them to become inflamed. While this condition typically affects men, women also become more likely to acquire it after going through menopause.
How is gout treated?
Many of the treatments for gout involve the use of various different medications. There are drugs for pain management, ones that block uric acid production, and medications that improve uric acid removal from the body. All of these different medications have benefits and downsides on a patient-to-patient basis and will often require a professional diagnosis to determine which one is best. In order to prevent gout attacks, patients are urged to drink 2-4 liters of fluid a day, half being water. This helps to flush out excess uric acid. A moderate diet is very helpful in alleviating symptoms. Individuals with this condition should avoid alcohol, meat, fish, and poultry. It’s also important to note that rapid weight gain and loss often increase the risk of acquiring this disease and should be avoided.
If you’ve been struggling with the sudden painful bouts of this condition, then it’s time to call our McPherson office at 620-241-3313 or schedule an appointment with Trent Timson DPM online.
How did I get this foot condition?
Uric acid buildup often occurs as a direct result of an improper diet or problems with the kidneys. While gout can occur from the kidneys being unable to expel excess uric acid from the body, a variety of lifestyle choices, medical conditions, and genetic conditions play a role in gout development. Excessive intake of organ meat, anchovies, asparagus, alcohol, and other foods and drinks with high levels of purines increase the likelihood of developing this foot problem.
Patients whose family has a history of this disease are prone to developing it themselves. This foot problem can also occur as the result of other medical conditions; high blood pressure or cholesterol, diabetes, and arteriosclerosis can often cause the onset of this joint problem.
What are the symptoms of gout?
The signs of this condition usually occur without warning and at rest, often even at night. As the condition occurs in the big toe joint, many people mistake the following symptoms for bunion development. In order to get the best diagnosis and treatment around, schedule an appointment online and podiatrist Trent Timson will get you back on your feet in no time.
Common symptoms of Gout:
Discomfort — After an episode of pain, patients often feel irritation in their joints that can last days or weeks. This only gets worse with future attacks.
Joint Pain — Gout usually comes with an intense pain in the big toe joint but can also affect many other joints in the body as well. This pain will be most severe within the first day it is felt.
Redness and Swelling — As the joints become inflamed, they become swollen and tender.
As this condition can result in permanent joint damage without immediate treatment, patients should seek podiatric attention if they develop a fever or the joint becomes hot; these are symptoms of an infection.