Tuesday, 26 March 2024 00:00

Joint and Other Damage From Gout

Gout is a form of inflammatory arthritis caused by the buildup of uric acid crystals in the joints, leading to sudden and severe pain, swelling, and redness, often affecting the big toe. Over time, repeated gout attacks can result in joint damage, deformity, and chronic arthritis. The accumulation of uric acid, a waste product normally excreted by the kidneys, can be attributed to various factors, including genetics and a diet that is high in purines found in red meat, seafood, and alcohol. Additionally, obesity, certain medications and underlying health conditions, such as hypertension and kidney disease, can contribute to developing gout. Lifestyle modifications consisting of maintaining a healthy weight, avoiding purine-rich foods, limiting alcohol consumption, and staying hydrated may help to reduce the risk of developing gout. Failure to manage gout effectively can lead to complications, such as tophi or lumps of uric acid crystals under the skin, kidney stones, and permanent joint damage. If you have gout, it is suggested that you seek medical attention from a podiatrist, adhere to treatments prescribed, and adopt a healthy lifestyle, which are important for preventing and managing gout effectively.

Gout is a painful condition that can be treated. If you are seeking treatment, contact one of our podiatrists from Palm Beach Foot & Ankle. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What Is Gout?

Gout is a form of arthritis that is characterized by sudden, severe attacks of pain, redness, and tenderness in the joints. The condition usually affects the joint at the base of the big toe. A gout attack can occur at any random time, such as the middle of the night while you are asleep.


  • Intense Joint Pain - Usually around the large joint of your big toe, and it most severe within the first four to twelve hours
  • Lingering Discomfort - Joint discomfort may last from a few days to a few weeks
  • Inflammation and Redness -Affected joints may become swollen, tender, warm and red
  • Limited Range of Motion - May experience a decrease in joint mobility

Risk Factors

  • Genetics - If family members have gout, you’re more likely to have it
  • Medications - Diuretic medications can raise uric acid levels
  • Gender/Age - Gout is more common in men until the age of 60. It is believed that estrogen protects women until that point
  • Diet - Eating red meat and shellfish increases your risk
  • Alcohol - Having more than two alcoholic drinks per day increases your risk
  • Obesity - Obese people are at a higher risk for gout

Prior to visiting your podiatrist to receive treatment for gout, there are a few things you should do beforehand. If you have gout you should write down your symptoms--including when they started and how often you experience them, important medical information you may have, and any questions you may have. Writing down these three things will help your podiatrist in assessing your specific situation so that he or she may provide the best route of treatment for you.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in Boynton Beach, Palm Beach Gardens, and West Palm Beach, FL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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