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Cause of Gout Symptoms Gout Diet Treatment
- What is Cause of Gout Symptoms Gout Diet Treatment
- Who gets it?
- Predisposing Factors
- Probable Outcomes
- How is it diagnosed?
- How is it treated?
- Drugs Associated with Cause of Gout Symptoms Gout Diet Treatment
What is Cause of Gout Symptoms Gout Diet Treatment
Gout is the most common form of crystal induced arthritis, characterised by
the deposition of crystals in and around joints and tendons. In some patients
this may be asymptomatic, in others it will cause an acute inflammatory reaction
(acute gout), or it may result in the slow destruction of the involved tissue
after repeated attacks (chronic gout).
Who gets it?
It is estimated that gout affects 0.2% of the population in Europe and the
USA. However it is thought that raised uric acid levels in the blood (often a
feature of gout) is far more common. Gout is seen more often in developed
countries (perhaps due to the influence of diet, high cholesterol and diabetes),
and is more common in men than women. It commonly occurs in middle age for men
and after menopause in women.
A family history of gout is commonly seen. Raised uric acid levels
(hyperuricaemia) in the blood predispose to the development of gout, however
most people with increased levels of uric acid do not develop symptoms.
Hyperuricaemia is more common in certain ethnic groups such as Maouris. Uric
acid levels increase with age, obesity, diabetes, heart disease and raise blood
pressure, foods such as liver and oily fish, high cholesterol and excess
consumption of alcohol.
Gout is caused by a metabolic disorder characterised by raised uric acid
levels and the deposition of urate crystals in joints and tissues, resulting in
acute inflammation of the joint.
Two forms of gout have been described:
1) primary (95%) - an inherited condition due to either overproduction or underexcretion of uric acid;
2) secondary (5%) - due to an acquired condition causing either overproduction or underexcretion of uric acid eg. renal failure.
With early treatment and control, prognosis is excellent. Recurrent attacks
of gout may require life long treatment with medications to control uric acid
levels, but this is usually effective.
How is it diagnosed?
The signs and symptoms of gout are usually enough to make a diagnosis. Fluid
can be taken from the affect joint and examined under microscopy but this is
often inconvient and unecessary, unless infection is suspected. Uric acid levels
are often raised in gout.
Joint damage in chronic gout can be seen on x-ray.
How is it treated?
Acute attacks of gout are treated with anti-inflammatory medications to
reduce pain and swelling. The patient is advised to rest the joint. Between
attacks attention may be given to reducing risk of further attacks by losing
weight, reducing alcohol consumption and modifying diet if necessary.
If attacks of gout are frequent, or tophi (crystal deposits) develop in the joints, long term therapy is considered. A medication called allopurinol is usually prescribed, in combination with anti-inflammatory drugs (to minimise the risk of allopurinol precipitating acute gout in the first few months).
Symptoms of this disease:
Treatments used in this disease:
Drugs used in the treatment of this disease:
|Created: 19/9/2004||Modified: 26/6/2007|