What Is Gout?

What is gout? Gout is a very painful condition. Here we will define gout, and discuss the cause, symptoms and treatment.

What is gout? Gout is a very painful condition. Here we will define gout, and discuss the cause, symptoms and treatment. Gout, also called gouty arthritis, is caused by an accumulation of uric acid in the blood. The disease usually appears in midlife and primarily in males. It can be hereditary or the secondary to some other disease process. The main symptom of gout is severe pain and swelling in joints, but gout usually effects one joint at a time, then may move from one joint to effect another joint.

The kidneys filter uric acid out of the body. In gout the body makes excess uric acid or the kidneys fail to function properly, failing to rid the body of the uric acid and it begins to build up in the joints in the form of uric acid crystals. This condition is very painful. The accumulation of these crystals causes severe pain and swelling in the joint. A common site for gout is the big toe joint. But gout can occur in an ankle, knee, elbow, wrist or finger. Typically the onset occurs at night with excruciating pain, swelling and inflammation.

Rich food and alcohol may contribute to the rise in uric acid and the increase in the severity of the symptoms. Also drinking plenty of water, helps keep the kidneys filtrating properly.



Checking uric acid levels is how gout is diagnosed. Sometimes fluid has to be extracted from the joint with a needle and syringe.

There is antigout medication that is given to help alleviate symptoms and prevent attacks, by keeping uric acid levels down. Most of the medicines do have side effects

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