Texas Foot Doctor's Blog
Posts for tag: Gout
How many times have you found yourself yelling, “Oh, my aching feet,” but then shrugged it off, figuring that "aching feet" are a natural part of life? You don’t have to put up with aching feet. Your podiatrist urges you to not ignore that ache in your feet. When pain occurs, it is the first sign that something isn’t right, so a trip to our practice is in order.
Gout is a form of arthritis, and it can often cause extreme pain to your feet. Approximately one million Americans suffer from gout, and although its source is a systemic problem within the body, there are some suggestions for how to treat gout that may help reduce your chance of having a gout flare-up.
Diagnosis and Treatment
Because the joint inflammation of gout can resemble that of a joint infection or other forms of arthritis, diagnosing gout requires removing a small amount of fluid from the joint and examining it for uric acid crystals. Once a diagnosis has been made, your podiatrist can recommend a gout treatment plan to help:
- Stop acute attacks
- Rapidly relieve pain and inflammation
- Avert future attacks
- Prevent the development of tophi, kidney stones and kidney disease
Gout treatment will most likely involve anti-inflammatory medications to relieve acute pain and inflammation, as well as urate-lowering drugs to control urate levels and prevent future attacks.
Other gout treatment strategies might include the following:
- Avoid foods with high purines, such as organ meats, anchovies, shellfish, bacon and gravies, and increasing intake of dairy foods.
- Avoid alcohol, which increases the production of urate and impairs excretion
- Lose weight to reduce blood urate levels
- Avoid medications that contribute to hyperuricemia, including diuretics
With proper treatment by your podiatrist, gout is one of the most controllable forms of arthritis. So when pain occurs, don’t just deal with it, seek treatment immediately.
Dealing with gout
Gout refers to the common form of inflammatory arthritis caused by increased level of uric acid in the circulatory system. Uric acid is produced when your body breaks down purine from your own DNA or it may also come from your high-purine diet. Pregnant women and people with lymphoma, cancer, hemolytic anemia, and leukemia also have high levels of uric acid. These urate crystals from uric acid build up in the joints like hands, wrists, ankles and feet causing pain, tenderness, swelling, and other discomforts.
Dealing with gout consists of managing inflammation and reduction of uric acid. Your doctor may prescribe anti-inflammatory drugs to decrease the swelling and pain on your joints. There are also drugs used to increase the removal of uric acid and to block its production.
Below are some tips on avoiding outburst and dealing with gout:
- Avoid drinking alcohol like wine and beer which are high in purine.
- Avoid high purine foods like mushrooms, herring, asparagus, red meat, beans and dark and leafy vegetables.
- Consume low-fat dairy products as protein alternatives and a protective shield from gout.
- Drink more than 8 glasses of water a day to flush out toxins and consequently maintain the right level of uric acid.
- Eat vegetables and fruits that are not high in purine like cherries, bananas and blueberries to help reduce uric acid levels.
- Maintain a healthy weight through proper diet and exercise. Excessive weight causes more pressure on your joints and increases your pain. However, fasting and drastic weight loss may also increase your uric levels. It is important to consult a professional with regards to your weight reduction.
Talk to your doctor about the best medication and treatment applicable to prevent gout and decrease your uric acid levels. Please call us at 817-424-3668 or visit www.texasfootdoctor.org for more information on dealing with gout.