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How Is Gout Diagnosed?

Monday, 31 August 2020 00:00

Patients who have experienced the medical condition that is known as gout are often aware of the severe pain and discomfort this condition can cause. In many cases, it affects the joints in the big toe, and the pain may be unbearable at night. It occurs as a result of excess uric acid in the bloodstream, and can happen for a variety of reasons. These can include genetic factors, existing medical conditions, and eating foods that have high amounts of purines. These types of foods can consist of shellfish, red meat, and drinks that are made with large amounts of sugar. Confirmation of gout starts with a proper diagnosis, which can include extracting a small amount of fluid from the affected joint. If you have gout attacks, it is strongly recommended that you are under the care of a podiatrist who can properly treat this condition.

Gout is a painful condition that can be treated. If you are seeking treatment, contact John Killough, DPM from Regional Foot Center. Our doctor 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 our offices located in Charleston and Effingham, IL. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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