Gout causes symptoms and treatment methods in 2022

Gout causes symptoms and treatment methods in 2022


Gout is a form of arthritis that affects more than three million people each year. Also known as gouty arthritis, this disease causes uric acid crystals to form in a joint (often the big toe), resulting in severe pain, redness and swelling in the joint. And some factors, such as genetics, kidney disorders, poor diet, alcohol or obesity, may make you more likely to develop gout.



Treatment for gout can include over-the-counter (OTC) medications with prescription pain relievers aimed at reducing uric acid levels in the body. You can also minimize the symptoms of this disease by losing weight, exercising regularly, and avoiding foods that cause an excess of uric acid.


** Causes of gout

Certain medical conditions may increase the risk of gout, either because they impair kidney function (allowing uric acid to build up in the blood) or cause chronic inflammation (which some scientists believe boosts uric acid production). Examples include:

Chronic kidney disease (CKD).

Congestive heart failure (CHF).

diabetes.

Psoriatic arthritis.

Certainly, genetics can play a role in the development of this disease. One example is the genetic mutation in the SLC2A9 or SLC22A12 gene, which helps regulate the amount of uric acid the body makes. An unhealthy lifestyle can also greatly affect the development of this disease. Unhealthy lifestyles include:

Obesity, which is associated with increased levels of uric acid.

Eating a diet rich in urea, which the body converts into uric acid.

High-fructose drinks and alcoholic beverages that impair kidney excretion of uric acid.

Some medicines, especially diuretics, which can impair the excretion of uric acid in the kidneys, leading to an increase in the concentration of uric acid in the blood. And thus increases the causes and risk factors for gout.


** Symptoms of gout

Gout symptoms get worse over time if left untreated. The severity and frequency of these symptoms are also closely related to the stage of infection.

Stage I: Gout begins in its early stages without symptoms. During this time, persistently high levels of uric acid in the blood will cause it to form crystals around a joint. While you will not experience any symptoms at this point, the gradual build-up of these crystals will inevitably lead to fierce attacks of symptoms later on.

Stage 2: Acute intermittent gout is the next stage in which symptoms begin with some attacks lasting 3 to 10 days. The most common joints in which uric acid is deposited are (the big toe, the knees, the ankle, the foot, as well as the elbow, wrist, and fingers). Here the patient feels sudden and severe pain accompanied by swelling, stiffness, redness, fatigue and sometimes a slight fever.

The third stage: At this stage, the patient enters what is known as chronic gout, which is an advanced stage of the disease in which uric crystals collect in solid masses called stones. which can lead to the gradual erosion of bone and cartilage tissue; And even lead to deformation and chronic inflammation in the joints.

It is worth noting that complications of untreated gout include deterioration in kidney function and the formation of stones (kidney stones).


**Diagnosis

Gout is usually diagnosed on the basis of laboratory tests and a physical examination. Radiography may also be used to support physical and laboratory diagnosis; and/or assess the extent of joint damage caused by this disease. The gold standard for diagnosis is synovial fluid analysis, in which joint fluid is extracted with a needle and examined under a microscope for evidence of uric crystals.

It also includes other diagnostic tools; Kidney function tests and urinalysis to help assess your risk of developing kidney stones. In addition, various imaging tests may be used to assess the amount of joint damage. Among them are:

Ultrasound; It is the preferred method of testing as it can detect early joint damage.

X ray; X-rays can detect joint erosion, but not in its early stages.

Magnetic Resonance; Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and computerized tomography (CT) scans may provide clearer clues to the extent of damage to the affected joint.


**Methods of treating gout

Gout is treated on 3 levels:

Reducing pain and treating infections when they occur.

Reducing uric acid levels in the blood.

Reducing risk factors that lead to high levels of uric acid in the blood.

Gout pain can often be treated by resting and applying ice packs to the affected joint to reduce local swelling. With some anti-inflammatory drugs.

The levels of uric acid in the blood are also reduced by taking certain medications that specialize in it. With a healthy diet, avoid foods and drinks that increase the level of uric acid in the blood. If diet and drug interventions fail to treat gout, other medications that lower uric acid may be prescribed. Its side effects include stomach upset, nausea, and joint and muscle pain.


** How to deal with gout

While gout can be largely controlled with medication and complete rest, there are a number of self-care strategies you can try to reduce the frequency of acute attacks of gout. Which:

Avoid high-purine foods such as liver, red meat, mussels, tuna, and beer.

Increase your intake of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and low-fat dairy.

Drink plenty of water daily to help remove uric acid through urination and dilute its concentration in the blood.

Lose weight if you are obese.

Elevate your foot when you feel severe pain.

Use a mobility device to take the pressure off the foot as much as possible.

Use relaxation techniques to better manage pain.

Knowing; If gout symptoms do not improve after 48 hours or persist for more than a week, you should see your doctor. This is because in some cases, medications may need to be changed or modified if they fail to provide relief to the patient.


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