There are many types of arthritis, gout is one of them and generally according to estimation huge number of people in the world suffering from it. In gout (a painful and debilitating form of arthritis) beyond the bearable range of uric acid our body stores.
This excess amount of blood uric acid level is either due to producing too much or excreting too little. The term “Gout” is used generically to describe the spectrum of this illness from acute to chronic.
Generally, Gout occurs much in men over 30 of age than women and women after the menopause condition becomes more susceptible to it. It can come quickly and also returning in a manner over time and has also some risk factors like obesity, cardiovascular, hypertension, etc. Of course, there are various treatments are available to cope up with the symptoms and prevent further attacks. Here are some important points related to gout overview –
- Gout attacks suddenly in the middle of the night and without any previous warning
- Men are more prone to gout than women of the same age. It is a very common disease when between the age of 30-50
- It caused by an overabundance amount of uric acid level in the bloodstream which cannot be excreted with general toxin removal
- Gout symptoms are due to uric acid crystals stored in the joints and usually affects the joints (such that feet, ankles, wrists, knees or elbows, etc.), especially in the big toe (a symptom known as podagra).
- Specific medications do their work in most of the gout cases
The pain conditions remain about a week when treated with medicine but may last longer if untreated which according to research may cause permanent damage to joints as well as kidneys.
Gout – Signs and Symptoms
Gout can affect any joints available in our human body but in general, it attacks the ankles, toes (particularly the big toe joint), fingers, wrists, elbows, heels, knees, mid-foot (where your shoelaces sit), etc.
Symptoms generally appear in suddenly without warning in the middle of the night and develop rapidly over a few hours and typically last up to 10 days if treated well with medications. After that, the inflammation reduces back to normal. If gout is left untreated, it spreads over time to affect more joints and develops major issues. Some signs and symptoms of gout are below-
- Severe and intense pain and discomfort for the first 12 to 24 hours in one or more joints
- Joints pain that lasts for a few days to a few weeks and gradually spreads to more joints over time
- The swelling condition appears around the affected joint area
- Itchy, peeling, and flaky skin after swelling reduces
- Redness, shiny skin tone over the affected joint
- The joints feel hot, very tender and like something crystal-like stored and locked in the joints
- The joints are unbearable when the only touch like pressure applied
Almost everyone with gout will experience further attacks at some point, usually, it comes back and attacks again every few months or years. It is very difficult to predict when and how often the symptoms will reappear.
Though there are various gout symptoms many people are asymptomatic means they don’t show any symptoms, although with elevated levels of uric acid in their blood. As they do not possess any issues they don’t require any treatment others, however, have acute or chronic symptoms requiring treatment.
In the case of acute gout, severe pain, redness, and swelling like symptoms come suddenly and it mostly stays for 12 to 24 hours and may last for a relatively short period of time like around 10 days. Acute gout causes sporadic attacks and can mostly affect any of major extremity joints, also with the small joints of the hands and feet affected. In this case, bending the joints is the most difficult phenomenon.
After the first gout attack, the pain and the inflammation completely gone for some times. But it may attack again after a period of several months to years. But when it attacks in a repeatedly will have more stability and cause more permanent damage to us. In the case of chronic gout, some symptoms can be found –
- Hard swellings known as tophi can develop on the joints which are made of uric acid and can grow at larger scale than ever before and can feel like it is breaking through the skin and mobility of joints is greatly affected.
- Gout can attack and affect any joints and while it’s development it generates pain, redness, inflammation and swelling the skin which may cause itching and peeling sensation on the skin.
- Not only toe joints but other parts like ankles, fingers, heels, wrists, knees, insteps, elbows are also the point of concern.