Gout – Diagnosis and Treatment

By March 28, 2018May 21st, 2018gout

Robina 7 Day Doctors and Acupuncture recommends this video on Gout:


Gout can affect anyone, and in recent years the number of cases of gout has been on the increase. This has been linked to a rise in obesity and an aging population. It can cause unbearable pain around the joints and for many the first sign can be pain in the big toe.

Gout is caused by a build-up of a substance called uric acid in your blood.

 Normally our kidneys get rid of it uric acid. But if our kidneys can’t do this fast enough or if the levels in our body are too high, crystals of uric acid can form.

These crystals tend to form around joints and when there are lots of them they can cause inflammation in the joint.

Genetics will play a role in gout as your genes will determine how well your kidneys can process normal levels of uric acid. But for others, weight and what you eat will play a role.

 If you are overweight or obese, you could be making more uric acid than your kidneys can process, and this can lead to a build-up. If you do suffer from gout, controlled gradual weight loss will help.  Extreme diets can make the problem worse by increasing the levels of uric acid in the blood.

Sugary drinks will raise your risk, so fizzy drinks and fruit juices should be avoided. Drinking alcohol can also increase your risk so consider cutting back.

Foods which contain high levels of substances called purines (which the body breaks down into uric acid) should be avoided.   So while red meat and poultry are fine in moderation, oily seafood (anchovies, herring, mackerel ) and game (venison, veal ) should be avoided.

 Symptoms can include:

  • The painful joint feeling hot and very tender. Even a bed sheet resting on it can be too much.
  • Swelling around the joint
  • The skin around the joint may be red and shiny

If you do develop gout in a joint, rest it and ice it. You can take Ibuprofen to manage the pain and reduce inflammation . If gout persists, your doctor can help.  There are ways to manage the pain better or by prescribing medication to control your uric acid levels.

Inflamed toe joint in patient with gout

Gouty attack Big Toe

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