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What are the Symptoms of Gout in Foot?

Gout on foot symptoms are strong. Gout can cause sudden and intense pain in one or more joints. Note that most often, these pains occur at night. For example, the simple contact of the sheets can become unbearable. The joint appears red and swollen, and the pain may be accompanied by fever and chills. In many of the first attacks of gout, it is the big toe that is affected. However, the ankle, wrist, hand, knee or elbow can also be affected.

A gout attack also manifests itself by swelling or redness in the affected area. A great sensation of cold on the affected joint is felt by the subject. Rarely, generalized joint pain accompanied by general malaise may appear. Fevers up to 39°C and chills may also occur.

Gout attacks, which last several days, recur every few weeks to several years. They tend to increase in frequency and duration as the disease progresses, as do the number of areas affected. After a few years, during an attack, severe pain usually occurs suddenly in one or more joints, often at night. The night-time pain may be due to the fact that fluid accumulated in the joint during the day leaves the joint more quickly than uric acid when the person is lying down, which increases the concentration of uric acid and makes it more likely to form crystals. The pain gets progressively worse and is often unbearable, especially on mobilisation and palpation of the joint.

The joint becomes inflamed (swollen and hot), while the skin over the joint appears red or purple, tight and shiny.

Other symptoms of an attack may include:

  • Fever
  • Increased heart rate (tachycardia)
  • Feeling generally unwell
  • Chills (very rarely)

The symptoms gradually subside. The joint regains its function and there are no symptoms until the next attack. However, if the disease progresses, untreated attacks last longer, are more frequent and affect several joints. If an attack is not treated, subsequent attacks can last up to 3 weeks. A person having an attack who has a fever of over 38.3°C with chills or other severe symptoms (e.g. weakness, vomiting, rash or shortness of breath), especially if they have not had these symptoms in previous attacks or have never had an attack, should seek medical advice or go to the emergency room, as these symptoms may also be due to a joint infection or a completely different problem.

After repeated attacks, gout can worsen, become chronic and can lead to joint deformity. Over time, joint movement is progressively reduced by the damage caused by deposits of uric acid crystals in the joints and tendons.

What causes hyperuricaemia?

Uric acid is a product of the breakdown of purines, which are found in certain foods (cooked meats, beer, with or without alcohol, offal, etc.) in varying quantities.

Hyperuricaemia may be due to : - excessive production of uric acid, following an excessive intake of purines in the diet or excessive production of uric acid by the body; - poor elimination of uric acid due to certain types of medication (diuretics, aspirin, etc.) or a kidney abnormality.

Does gout also affect women?

90% of patients are men. In women, primary gout only occurs after the menopause. Nine out of ten gout sufferers have excess uric acid in their blood. But don't be fooled into thinking that an excess of uric acid combined with joint pain automatically indicates a gout attack.

How can I prevent gout?

You can prevent gout by making some changes to your lifestyle: - Drink plenty of water to help your kidneys work better and avoid dehydration ; - Exercise regularly to maintain a healthy weight. Excess weight increases the uric acid in your body and puts more pressure on your joints. - Do your best to limit the purines in your body, as these chemicals can trigger the build-up of uric acid. Foods and drinks containing high levels of purine include: alcohol, red meat and offal (liver, for example), shellfish, sauces, drinks and foods rich in fructose (fruit sugar), animal proteins. All animal proteins can potentially lead to high levels of uric acid.

What triggers a gout attack?

Various situations can trigger a gout attack: direct shock, surgery, abrupt cessation or initiation of certain treatments (low-dose aspirin, diuretics, certain antibiotics, allopurinol), all events leading to dehydration, low intake of beverages (water!!), certain alcoholic beverages, non-alcoholic beer or overeating. See the advice to follow section.

What is the difference between crisis treatment and background treatment?

The aim of acute treatment is to relieve pain quickly and reduce inflammation. The aim of background treatment is to reduce the excessive level of uric acid in the blood in order to prevent the formation of crystals and thus the occurrence of further attacks.

7 Comments

  • Mike
    Posted 20. September 2022 at 15:44

    Thanks to this site I know that I suffer from gout and I also know how I can alleviate the pain. I am so lucky to have found this incredible information!

  • Roissin
    Posted 28. May 2024 at 15:15

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  • Acela
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