Dealing with gout in your feet can be a very painful experience. Gout is an inflammatory process that is caused by excess amounts of uric acid in the tissue. Treating gout is approached in two different stages. Patient who are experiencing an acute gouty attack or flare up are normally treated to reduce the pain, swelling, and inflammation. Patient who have a history of gout attacks are treated to address the underlying cause of uric acid build-up in the body and to prevent future gout attacks.
Patients who are experiencing an acute gouty attack or flare up are normally treated with the following:
- Oral Anti-inflammatory/steroids: Oral anti-inflammatory medications such as naproxen, mobic, sulindac, indomethacin and others can be used to reduce pain, swelling, and redness.
- Injection therapy: Steroid injections into the joint or site of pain can reduce discomfort, swelling, and redness.
- Hydration: Patients are encouraged to hydrate and drink plenty of fluids such as water and avoid any beverages that can cause dehydration such as alcohol.
- Dietary changes: Reducing the amount of uric acid in one’s diet can greatly reduce the symptoms and chances of more acute gout flare-ups. Patients are recommended to lower the amount of uric acid in the body. Avoid organ meats and large portions of red meat, food containing high fructose corn syrup, sweet fruit juice, sugars, and desserts. Eating a low-fat and low-salt diet with increased vegetables is generally preferred. Consumption of berries, beets, cherry juice, and skim milk can help reduce the onset of gout.
- Immobilization: Patients who are experience an acute gouty attack are in a severe amount of pain and swelling. Patients are typically immobilized and encouraged to elevate their foot with ice applied to resolve swelling. Reduced walking in the short term may be necessary to manage pain symptoms.
The symptoms of an acute gouty flare up resolve normally in 3 to 10 days with proper medical management.
Patients who have a history of gouty flares are treated to address the underlying cause of uric acid build up. Often times the accumulation of uric acid is due to problems excreting it via the kidneys (90% of the time), with overproduction of uric acid being less common (only 10% of the time) . Medications can be prescribed to address the build up or the under-excretion of uric acid. Dietary changes can be an important part of the treatment plan, as well.
The doctors are Progressive Foot Care are experts in dealing with gout. If you are suffering from gout or foot pain, please call today to make an appointment.