Gout Pain – Symptoms and Treatment

Gout Pain – Symptoms and Treatment

All of a sudden one experiences extreme pain in the big toe or other joints. The pain is excruciating and occurs at any time of the day. Such symptoms are typical of gout. Gout pain is a complex type of arthritic pain that occurs due to the build-up of uric acid in the bloodstream. The accumulation of uric acid forms sharp crystals in bone joints. The most common location where gout occurs is the big toe. A gout attack can occur to anyone.

A gout attack typically lasts for 10 days, out of which extreme pain occurs during the initial three days. Gout attack starts at one joint and spreads to other joints when not treated. Pain relief for gout can be achieved by reducing the inflammation. Prompt treatment of gout foot pain results in the reduction of inflammation and pain and prevents spreading to other joints as well.

Symptoms of gout pain
Symptoms of gout pain vary with the severity and build-up of uric acid. Extremely painful gout pain is caused when the uric acid accumulates to the extent where crystals are formed at the joints. The common symptoms of gout pain are:

  • Excruciating pain in the joints: Big toe is the most common joint that is affected by gout pain. It can also spread to other joints like elbow, ankle, wrists, and fingers. The first two to three days of a gout attack are most painful.
  • Swollen joints: Gout is caused by the accumulation of uric acid at joints. This accumulation manifests as a swelling or bulge at the joints. Excessive uric acid deposits form crystals at the joints, which appear like tiny nodes under the skin.
  • Moderate discomfort: After the extreme pain reduces, moderate to mild pain lingers at the joints. This discomfort lasts for weeks. Subsequent gout attacks are likely to last much longer and cause more severe pain.
  • Inflammation: The big toe and other joints are inflamed due to the build-up of uric acid. The area around the inflamed joints is tender and painful to touch.
  • Redness of joints: The joints affected by gout are red and warm.
  • Limited mobility: Due to the swelling of the big toe, mobility is affected. Every movement causes extreme pain.
  • Loss of balance: As the big toe is affected, people tend to lose balance while walking.
  • Fever: Severe form of gout is often accompanied by fever. Fever is an indication of infection at the joint.

Treatment for gout pain
Pain relief for gout usually occurs within 10 days, even when left untreated. Severe joint pain accompanied by fever requires immediate medical treatment. Pain relief for gout is based on the severity of the condition. Mild to moderate pain can be treated through pain relief medication and lifestyle changes.

Common treatment methods followed for pain relief for gout are as follows:

  • Medication for pain relief: Gout pain can be debilitating and can occur at anytime, anywhere. Relief from gout pain can be achieved through non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication and corticosteroids. There are certain medicines that are effective for gout pain. However, it is advisable to consult the doctor before taking any medicines for gout pain .
  • Medication for preventing complications: The risk of developing gout complications can be reduced through medicines that block the production of uric acid and improve uric acid removal.
  • Home remedies: Apart from medication for treating gout pain, certain home remedies like cold packs also help in mitigating pain. Getting plenty of rest, especially limiting the use of the affected joints also helps in speedy recovery from gout. Wearing comfortable footwear helps manage gout pain.
  • Lifestyle changes: Changes in the diet by avoiding foods that are high in purines help in reducing uric acid formation in the body. Intake of plenty of fluids helps in the prevention of gout pain. Avoiding caffeine drinks, alcoholic beverages, and artificially sweetened drinks brings down the risk of developing complications of gout. People who are overweight are prone to get frequent attacks of gout. Reducing weight and maintaining a healthy weight also help in reducing the risk of developing gout.
  • Alternative methods: These methods can be followed when conventional therapy and medications don’t provide pain relief for gout. Certain foods are known to lower uric acid levels. Extract of herbs and fruits help in fighting gout pain. Herbal supplements like turmeric, bromelain, and Devil’s claw are known to be effective against gout pain. Acupuncture is a popular alternative therapy for treating gout. Home remedies like hot-cold compress are also known to provide relief from inflammation and pain due to gout.

Pain relief for gout can be sought through medication, physical therapy, and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Recurrent gout, advanced gout, and kidney stones are complications of untreated, unchecked gout. Method of pain relief for gout is decided based on current health conditions and preferences.

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