Gout

Gout is a form of inflammatory arthritis that causes severe pain, swelling, stiffness, and inflammation. It is caused by excess uric acid in the bloodstream, which crystallizes and deposits in the joints. While gout can affect any part of the body, it is most common in the big toe.

Symptoms of Gout:

Gout pain often comes on without warning, sometimes in the middle of the night and can last days or even weeks. The pain can range from moderately painful to debilitating in some cases. The most common symptoms are:
  • Experiencing pain in one joint, often the big toe
  • Swelling
  • Redness
  • Inflammation

Causes of Gout:

Gout is the result of excess uric acid in the body, which is a condition called hyperuricemia. When the body makes too much uric acid, it crystallizes and deposits within the joints, leading to gout. It is important to note that not everybody with hyperuricemia will develop gout, and hyperuricemia without gout usually does not require treatment. Risk factors for developing hyperuricemia and gout include:
  • Family history
  • Lead exposure
  • Certain medications
  • Obesity

Treatments for Gout:

While gout is one of the most painful forms of arthritis, there are several effective treatment methods to and self-care strategies to ease symptoms. Popular treatments include:
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
  • Lifestyle changes to prevent flare-ups
    • Adopting a healthy diet
    • Engaging in physical activity
  • Stopping medications that contribute to hyperuricemia
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