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Possible Causes of Gout

Monday, 13 August 2018 00:00

A form of arthritis that attacks the joints in the big toe is often referred to as gout. This condition may typically occur abruptly, and obvious symptoms may include severe pain and discomfort, swollen joints, and redness. It develops as a result of excess uric acid in the blood, which can form crystals in the joints. This may occur because of specific foods that are ingested, including an overabundance of shellfish, alcohol, or red meat. Some patients may develop this ailment from inherited genes, being overweight, and taking certain medications. If you are afflicted by this type of arthritis, it’s important that it is treated as quickly as possible, to avoid the development of additional complications. Please speak with a podiatrist about the treatment options that are right for you.

Gout is a painful condition that can be treated. If you are seeking treatment, contact one of our podiatrists from Foot Health Center of Merrimack Valley. Our doctors 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 one of our offices located in North Andover, and Tewksbury, MA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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