If you need a more accessible version of this website, click this button on the right.Switch to Accessible Site

How Gout Occurs

Tuesday, 07 September 2021 00:00

Uric acid is a by-product of the body breaking down purines—which are present in chemical compounds in the body as well as in certain foods we consume. Most uric acid is excreted, but when too much of it remains (hyperuricemia), it can crystalize on joints. One of the most painful arthritic conditions is known as gout. Some believe lower temperatures in the toes makes a more conducive environment for crystals to form, and so the big toe is often where gout occurs. Gout flare-ups can typically last for days or weeks before going into remission. During a flare-up, you may experience severe pain and swelling, along with heat and redness at the site. Gout with no single cause is known as primary gout. Secondary gout is due to kidney disease or medications affecting the kidney’s ability to expel urate. A podiatrist may make a diagnosis of gout after an examination, blood tests, imaging tests, and fluid aspiration from the affected joint.

Gout is a painful condition that can be treated. If you are seeking treatment, contact Dr. Robert Graser from Graser Podiatry and Bunion Surgery Institute. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What Is Gout?

Gout is a form of arthritis that is characterized by sudden, severe attacks of pain, redness, and tenderness in the joints. The condition usually affects the joint at the base of the big toe. A gout attack can occur at any random time, such as the middle of the night while you are asleep.

Symptoms

  • Intense Joint Pain - Usually around the large joint of your big toe, and it most severe within the first four to twelve hours
  • Lingering Discomfort - Joint discomfort may last from a few days to a few weeks
  • Inflammation and Redness -Affected joints may become swollen, tender, warm and red
  • Limited Range of Motion - May experience a decrease in joint mobility

Risk Factors

  • Genetics - If family members have gout, you’re more likely to have it
  • Medications - Diuretic medications can raise uric acid levels
  • Gender/Age - Gout is more common in men until the age of 60. It is believed that estrogen protects women until that point
  • Diet - Eating red meat and shellfish increases your risk
  • Alcohol - Having more than two alcoholic drinks per day increases your risk
  • Obesity - Obese people are at a higher risk for gout

Prior to visiting your podiatrist to receive treatment for gout, there are a few things you should do beforehand. If you have gout you should write down your symptoms--including when they started and how often you experience them, important medical information you may have, and any questions you may have. Writing down these three things will help your podiatrist in assessing your specific situation so that he or she may provide the best route of treatment for you.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in Boerne, Hondo, and Devine, TX . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Gout
Connect with us

featured articles