Yes, gout is an excruciating type of arthritis. Any discomfort and pain that gout sufferers experience is caused by acid crystals that have lodged between the joints of the feet. In today’s post, Dr. Eric Ricefield, Dr. Mark Yagodich, and Dr. Aliza V. Eisen of greater Philadelphia’s Your Next Step Foot and Ankle Care Center share more information regarding the causes and risk factors for this painful condition.
What Is Gout?
It is a type of arthritis that consists of sudden, severe rounds of redness, tenderness, and pain in the joints. Gout usually affects the joint located at the bottom of the big toe. It can attack at any time, such as in the middle of the night while you are sleeping.
Symptoms of Gout
- Persistent Discomfort: Joint discomfort that lasts from a few days to a couple of weeks
- Redness and Inflammation: Joints may become tender, red, swollen, and warm
- Severe Joint Pain: Typically near the large joint of your big toe, which is most severe within the first 4 to 12 hours
- Reduced Range of Motion: Decrease in joint flexibility.
Risk Factors of Gout
- Medications: Diuretics can raise acid levels
- Genetics: If your family members suffer from gout, you’re more likely to also
- Diet: Eating shellfish and red meat increases your risk
- Obesity: Obese patients are at a higher risk for gout
- Age/Gender: Gout is more common in men until they reach the age of 60
- Alcohol: Consuming more than two alcoholic drinks per day elevates your risk.
You should do a few things before visiting your podiatrist for gout treatment. First, you should note your symptoms, including when and how often you experience them, pertinent medical information, and any questions you have. Making a note of these things will help your podiatrist assess your specific situation to determine the best treatment method.
Though gout is extremely painful, there are treatments that can help ease the pain. If you think you may have this condition, contact the offices of greater Philadelphia’s Your Next Step Foot and Ankle Care Center for diagnosis and treatment. Click here to locate the office nearest you and schedule an appointment today.