Gout: What is it and why does it hurt so badly?

Gout flares are painful attacks that can last for Weeks.

Gout is a form of arthritis and you can have recurrent flares.

A flare occurs when uric acid crystals deposit in and around a joint. This happens most often in the big toe joint, but gout can occur in any joint.

Symptoms of a Gout Flare:

  • Warm to the touch
  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Extreme Pain – will hurt to have the sheets touch your foot

Why did I get a Gout Attack?

Levels of uric acid are too high in the blood due to:

  • Dehydration
    • Working outside in the hot sun
    • Not drinking enough water
    • Drinking Alcohol
    • Playing golf/fishing and drinking Alcohol
  • Trauma
    • Falling, tripping or stubbing your toe
    • Shoes that are too tight
  • Diet
    • Red meat/organ meat
    • Shellfish – shrimp/lobster/crab
    • Sugary Drinks
    • Alcohol – Beer
    • Avocado, spinach, green peas, mushrooms, and asparagus

Treatment

  • Call your Podiatrist to be evaluated – Pain can be drastically reduced in several days with Prescription medications.
  • Prescription anti-inflammatories
  • Steroids
  • Avoid red meat and shellfish
  • Increase water consumption
  • Gout and Cellulitis (bacterial skin infection) can look similar, but have different treatments. It is best to be evaluated by a medical professional.

By Michael Swiatek, DPM.
Dr. Swiatek is located in Galion and Bellville. To schedule an appointment, call 419-462-3465 or visit request an appointment online.

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