Gout is a disorder in uric acid metabolism that causes sudden attacks of intense pain, swelling, and redness in your joints or soft tissues.
It is a painful form of arthritis. When your body has excessive uric acid, sharp crystals may deposit in the joints especially on the big toe, causing episodes of swelling and pain called gout attacks.
The human body makes uric acid during the breakdown of chemicals called purines which is found in certain food and drinks. This normal byproduct goes through the kidneys and exits from the body when you are urinating.
Hyperuricemia occurs when there is increased production of uric acid or decreased excretion of uric acid in urine.
- Increased production of uric acid may be due to:
- Excessive alcohol consumption especially beer.
- Dietary factors – Excessive consumption of red meat, seafood, shellfish, highly sweetened soft drinks.
- Decreased excretion of uric acid may be due to:
- Disorders in the kidney – decreased secretion or absorption or excretion of uric acid.
RISK FACTORS FOR GOUT
- Family history of gout.
- Recent surgery or trauma
- Older age
- Medical conditions like Hypertension, Diabetes mellitus, kidney diseases, High levels of blood cholesterol, and osteoarthritis.
- Severe pain in the affected joint especially at night.
- Extreme tenderness
- Stiffness with limited range of motion
- Marked swelling with redness and shiny skin on affected part.
- Rise in temperature
- Physical examination by Doctor.
- Blood test – Serum Uric acid level (more than 6.8 mg/dl suggests Gout)
- Aspiration from affected joint – identification of MSU crystals confirms diagnosis.
- Renal function tests, blood pressure, blood glucose and serum lipid profile should be undertaken to identify associated diseases.
- X-ray of affected joint – to assess the degree of joint damage.
Frequent episodes of joint pain especially of great toe accompanying Hyperuricemia are sufficient to establish the diagnosis.
- Reduction of excess alcohol consumption, especially beer. Eat healthy. Be aware of portion sizes and don’t skip meals.
- If you are overweight, reducing weight will be helpful.
- Medications – diuretics should be stopped if possible.
- Drink plenty of water to help your kidneys function better and avoid dehydration.
- Exercise regularly to stay at a healthy weight. Extra weight increases uric acid in your body and puts more stress on joints.
- Practice the following yoga poses for pain relief with the guidance of your doctor –
- Ardha matsyendrasana (The Spinal twist pose)
- Dhanusana (Bow pose)
- Salabhasana (Locust pose)
- Viparita Karani (Legs-Up-The-Wall-Pose)
- Ananda Balasana (Happy baby pose)
Homeopathic treatment is known to control the uric acid diathesis and also useful in acute attacks. In acute stage, Homeopathic medicines will help to reduce the pain, reduce the uric acid levels. In chronic stage of Gout, Homeopathic treatment focuses on reducing the tendency for uric acid formation along with symptomatic treatment.
With the help of Homeopathic treatment and proper dietary management, the patient can notice the reduction in the frequency of Gout attacks and intensity of pains which gradually leading to complete cure.