Gout: Everything You Need to Know About its Symptoms

Gout is a severe type of arthritis. Sharp stones can develop in your joints if your body has too much uric acid (usually your big toe).

Gout episodes are times when pain and swelling flare up and disappear. Treatment is typically a mix of symptom control and dietary changes.

Symptoms of Gout

Gout periods are extremely painful and can occur unexpectedly, often overnight. Symptoms in your afflicted joints during a gout episode may include:

  • Excruciating agony.
  • Discoloration or erythema.
  • Tenderness, even to gentle contact.
  • Warmth, or the sensation that the place is "on fire."

What is the Duration of a Gout Attack?

Gout incidents typically last a week or two. Some flares may last longer than others and produce more intense symptoms. You may not have any gout signs in between incidents.

What is the Source of Gout?

Gout is caused by an overabundance of uric acid in the body. Purines are molecules that are broken down by your body in certain foods and beverages, it naturally produces uric acid. Normally, your kidneys filter uric acid from your circulation, and then exit your body when you urinate.

Sometimes your body generates an excessive amount of uric acid or your kidneys do not clear it quickly enough from your circulation. When your body has elevated uric acid (hyperuricemia), uric acid crystals can form and settle in your joints. Sharp crystals clump together, causing abrupt discomfort, swelling, and other symptoms.

Briefly elevated uric acid levels do not guarantee you will acquire gout. Many individuals with hyperuricemia never develop gout.

Which Foods Cause Gout?

Eating or imbibing purine-rich foods is more likely to result in elevated uric acid amounts in your body, which causes gout.

  • Sugary drinks and sweets: Half of the standard table sugar is fructose (fruit sugar), which degrades into uric acid. Gout can be triggered by any meal or drink with a high sugar level.
  • High fructose corn syrup: This is a concentrated form of fructose. Packaged food products and processed snacks can contain high fructose corn syrup.
  • Alcohol: Even though not all alcoholic beverages are rich in purines, alcohol stops your kidneys from eliminating uric acid, drawing it back into your body where it accumulates.
  • Organ meats: Liver, tripe, sweetbreads, brains, and organs are among them.
  • Game meats: Purines are abundant in specialties such as poultry, veal, and deer.
  • Certain seafood: Herring, scallops, mussels, codfish, salmon, trout, and haddock are some of the seafood options.
  • Red meat: Beef, veal, pig, and bacon.
  • Turkey: Oven baked sliced turkey.

Final Thoughts

Gout is arthritis that can cause various symptoms that can have a significant effect on a person's daily existence. The most common gout symptom is sudden and intense pain in the affected joint, accompanied by swelling, redness, and warmth.

Gout attacks often occur at night and last for several days or weeks. In addition to joint pain, some individuals with gout may experience fever, chills, and fatigue during a flare-up.

It's essential for individuals who experience any of these symptoms to seek medical attention promptly, as untreated gout can lead to long-term damage to the joints and other complications.

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