Uric acid is a byproduct of the process your body goes through as it breaks down purines, chemical compounds that naturally occur in your body as well as in certain foods such as red meat, seafood and alcoholic beverages. Normally, most uric acid is reabsorbed back into the body, or expelled through the kidneys. When your body produces too much uric acid (or has difficulty flushing it), hard, crystal-like deposits build up in and around the joints. This is known as gout. While this painful condition may manifest in any joint of the body, it most commonly occurs in the metatarsophalangeal joint of the big toe. These sharp urate crystals can cause severe flare-ups of pain, swelling, tenderness and heat in the affected joint. Symptoms tend to develop quickly and occur more often at night. They can come back and increase in frequency if the underlying condition is not treated properly. Contact a podiatrist for an exam, and to discuss possible treatments for this painful arthritic condition.
What Is Gout?
Gout is a type of arthritis caused by a buildup of uric acid in the bloodstream. It often develops in the foot, especially the big toe area, although it can manifest in other parts of the body as well. Gout can make walking and standing very painful and is especially common in diabetics and the obese.
People typically get gout because of a poor diet. Genetic predisposition is also a factor. The children of parents who have had gout frequently have a chance of developing it themselves.
Gout can easily be identified by redness and inflammation of the big toe and the surrounding areas of the foot. Other symptoms include extreme fatigue, joint pain, and running high fevers. Sometimes corticosteroid drugs can be prescribed to treat gout, but the best way to combat this disease is to get more exercise and eat a better diet.
If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in St. Augustine, Palm Coast, and Palatka, FL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.Read more about Everything You Need to Know About Gout