By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
January 03, 2018
Category: Gout
Tags: Diabetes   Gout  

During the holiday season, Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care often sees an increase in the number of treatment for gout cases. Why? One of the most common triggers of gout attacks are eating foods high in a chemical called purines. Purines increase the amount of uric acid in your body. Excess uric acid that builds up in a joint can crystallize, which can cause the extreme pain that is characteristic of a gout attack. Foods that contain large amounts of purines include many holiday favorites, such as red meat, shellfish, rich sauces, red wine, beer and alcoholic beverages. In addition, overindulging over the holidays can lead to weight gain, which is also associated with gout. Other factors that can increase your risk for this painful condition include:

  • Genetics
  • Diseases such as: high blood pressure, leukemia, thyroid disorders, kidney disease, blood vessel diseases and diabetes
  • Taking certain medications and vitamins
  • Stress
  • Chemotherapy
  • Surgery

Diagnosis and Treatment

The symptoms of gout are fairly straightforward: excruciating joint pain accompanied by redness and swelling around the joint. Gout frequently strikes in the big toe joint, perhaps because it is subject to excessive amounts of pressure from walking and is the farthest joint from the heart (uric acid responds to cooler temperatures). Gout is also more likely to strike men than women, especially men between 40 and 60 years of age.

Our foot doctors, Dr. Varun Gujral and Dr. Nrupa Shah will want to get a complete medical history if you believe you may have gout. Our podiatrists will then examine the affected joint and may order x-rays or laboratory tests to rule out other possible conditions. Treatments for gout include medications, icing the affected joint, resting and elevating your foot at or above the level of your heart. Gout can become a recurring problem and the foot doctor may prescribe maintenance medication to avoid future attacks.  The doctor may also recommend modifications to your diet such as increasing your fluid intake to help the kidneys flush excess uric acid from your body. For more information, contact our New Jersey offices in Edison, Monroe or Monmouth Junction by calling: 732-662-3050.