What is Gout? Looking for Gout doctor in New Port Richey?
Gout is a type of arthritis that is caused by the accumulation of uric acid crystals in the joints, which can lead to inflammation and intense pain. While gout can affect any joint in the body, it is most commonly associated with the big toe and foot.
Gout is caused by a build-up of uric acid in the body, which can occur due to a variety of factors including diet, genetics, and certain medical conditions. Uric acid is a waste product that is normally removed from the body through urine, but when the body produces too much uric acid or does not eliminate it properly, it can build up in the blood and form crystals that accumulate in the joints.
The condition can cause severe episodes of tenderness, swelling, pain, redness, and warmth. When the uric acid levels in the blood continue to be high, the person can develop chronic gout. The attacks can become more frequent and may not go away with the usual treatment. Call us today, we want to be your gout doctor in New Port Richey.
What Other Risk Factors Are There for Gout?
Gout is more likely to develop if:
- A family member has gout
- You take diuretics or immune suppressing medications
- You eat larger amounts of shellfish and red meat
- You drink more than two alcoholic beverages a day
- You are overweight or obese
- You have undergone bypass surgery
- You drink sodas or sugary drinks which contain fructose
What are symptoms of a gout attack?
Symptoms of gout typically include sudden and severe pain, redness, and swelling in the affected joint. The pain is often described as a burning or throbbing sensation, and can be so intense that even the weight of a bed sheet can cause discomfort. The joint may also feel warm to the touch and be tender to pressure.
Gout attacks often occur at night or early in the morning and can last for several days to a few weeks. While the symptoms may subside on their own, without treatment, gout can cause chronic joint damage and lead to ongoing pain and disability.
What Treatments Are Used?
When a person is suffering from an acute gout attack, the first step is to get the swelling and pain under control. This would be done in the office. Some tips to help relieve symptoms:
- Avoid sugary drinks and alcohol, drink lots of water instead
- Ice and elevate the affected joint
- Relax, stress can make it worse
- Take an anti-inflammatory drug if you can
- Call us, your gout doctor to make an appointment
Treatment for gout typically involves a combination of lifestyle changes and medication. Dietary modifications, such as reducing the intake of high-purine foods like red meat, seafood, and alcohol, can help decrease the amount of uric acid in the body. Drinking plenty of fluids and maintaining a healthy weight can also help prevent gout attacks.
Medications used to treat gout include nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen, which can help reduce pain and inflammation. Colchicine, a medication that is specifically used to treat gout, can help reduce the severity and duration of gout attacks. In severe cases, corticosteroids may be used to reduce inflammation and pain.
In addition to managing acute attacks of gout, long-term management of the condition involves preventing future attacks and reducing the risk of complications. This may involve taking medication to reduce the production of uric acid in the body, such as allopurinol or febuxostat. In some cases, medications may be used to help the body eliminate uric acid more efficiently, such as probenecid.
Preventing gout attacks involves making lifestyle modifications to reduce the amount of uric acid in the body and minimize triggers that can lead to attacks. This may involve avoiding high-purine foods and alcohol, staying well-hydrated, and maintaining a healthy weight. Regular exercise and physical activity can also help prevent gout attacks and improve overall joint health.
In conclusion, gout is a type of arthritis that can cause intense pain and swelling in the joints, most commonly the big toe and foot. It is caused by a build-up of uric acid in the body, and can be managed through a combination of lifestyle changes and medication. If you suspect that you may have gout or are experiencing symptoms of gout, it is important to consult with a gout doctor for an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment plan.
Corticosteroids are also used to treat the inflammation. Medications which lower uric acid levels are also available.
Call us at 727-842-9504 to make an appointment. Dr. Zafar, I want to be your Gout doctor!