Gout is a type of arthritis that can be particularly painful. It most often affects a joint in the big toe. However, it may also affect the ankles, insteps, heels, and other areas of the body. If you suffer from gout, work with a podiatrist to learn how you can relieve your foot pain and manage your condition.
In addition to pain in the joint, gout can cause swelling, stiffness, and soreness. The affected area may appear redder than usual and it may feel warm to the touch. Sometimes, an attack of gout pain will wake you from sleep. The pain may linger for a few days to a few weeks after the attack.
Causes and Risk Factors
Gout is caused by an accumulation of urate crystals, which are formed from uric acid in the bloodstream. The uric acid is produced naturally as a byproduct when your body processes purines, which are substances found in foods such as mushrooms and organ meats. Uric acid levels can reach abnormally high levels if you eat too many of these types of foods or if your kidneys cannot properly rid the blood of uric acid. You’re at a greater risk of developing gout if you have a family history of it, you’ve had an organ transplant, you’re a man, you’re overweight, or you consume excess alcohol.
Your podiatrist may prescribe various medications to manage your condition, such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), corticosteroids, and colchicine. Colchicine is a type of pain reliever usually prescribed to those who cannot tolerate NSAIDs. You might also take drugs to block the production of uric acid or to accelerate its removal. Dietary changes and maintaining a healthy body weight may be recommended.
Those who suffer from gout and similar conditions that cause foot pain are invited to schedule an appointment with Advanced Foot & Ankle Specialists of Sugar Land and Houston. Our podiatrists provide exceptional patient care for a range of conditions, including nail fungus and nail infections. Give us a call today at (281) 242-3338 or visit our website to explore our services .