The major cause of gout is the accumulation of uric acid in the
joints. The uric acid is a chemical that is a natural part of
the normal breakdown and build up of food in body tissues. The
level of uric acid may be found and measured in the blood.
The condition where there is a rise in bloods uric acid
level is called hyperuricaemia. With the presence of such
condition it is no wonder that uric acid crystals are formed in
the joints. These crystals are responsible for the inflammation
called gouty arthritis or acute gout.
attacks people whose uric acid level has always been above
normal. There are various reasons why uric acids level increases
in the body:
The higher than normal uric acid levels
may be inherited in some families
Obesity was also found to
cause gout attacks
High alcohol and caffeine intake
High intake of food containing purines
Some drugs used to
treat high blood pressure and long standing kidney diseases
The first step in treating gout is to correct the factors that
increase the levels of uric acid in the body. Patients should
also work to refrain from eating purine rich foods since these
substances are found to contain a lot of uric acid.
are foods high in purines and to be avoided:
products such as liver, kidneys, tripe, sweetbreads and tongue,
Excessive amounts of red meat, shellfish, fish roe and
Peas, lentils and beans,
caffeine intakes should be reduced. A glass of beer a day or
less is recommended
Crash diets should also be avoided
Some drugs for high blood pressure may need to be altered or
An important aspect of treating gout is lowering
the uric acid levels. There are some drugs that can bring down
the uric acid level in the body. However, it should be noted
that these drugs only temporarily treat symptoms of gout and
should not be taken on a long-term basis. The dosage is based on
the level of uric acid found in the body. Regular check ups are
required in order to arrive at the maintenance dosage that will
prevent recurrent gout attacks.
As long as the level of
uric acid continues to be lower than the normal any symptoms of
gout are a remote possibility. Provided of course that
medication is continued. Some drugs work by increasing
elimination of uric acid through the kidney while others simply
hinder the formation of uric acid in the first place.
Likewise, it is important for patients using medications to
realize that during the first few months of treatment, it is
still possible to have gout attacks, however severe gouty
attacks are lessened.
Some of the complications of long time and acute cases of
gout are deposits of uric acid salts that may appear around the
affected joint and even in tissues in the earlobes. These uric
acid salts are chalk colored nodules, and are also called tophi.
The presence of uric acid salts is an indication further
treatment is needed.
About the Author:
Lisa McDowell. For more information and to sign up for a Free
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