Gout is the result of an imbalance of uric acid in the body. Small crystals form which collect in the joint causing irritation and inflammation which can be very painful and severe.
Is it serious?
Apart from the severe pain that gout causes, most other effects are uncommon but can include kidney stones and/or kidney damage.
Who gets it?
1 in 200 people are affected by gout and more men than women are affected. It tends to appear in middle age but can run in families also.
How do I know I have it?
The main symptom of gout is waking up in the middle of the night with an acute throbbing pain in the big toe which is swollen. Usually only one of the big toes is affected. The pain can last for a few hours and usually subsides then doesn’t return for a few months.
How do I prevent it?
Leading a healthy lifestyle can help reduce your chances of gout. Maintaining a healthy weight, eating a healthy diet and making sure there is plenty of Vitamin C in your diet.
What are the treatments?
Gout can be controlled with anti-inflammatory drugs which your GP can prescribe to alleviate the attack over 24 hours. An immediate measure is to levitate your leg to help reduce swelling. Apply ice or cooling lotions whilst waiting for your medication to take effect. We can also help to alleviate issues by adapting your existing footwear. Orthoses fit easily into your shoes and help redistribute pressure away from the affected parts.
- Keep your feet clean by washing them every day
- Dry your feet thoroughly after washing them
- Trim your toenails regularly using proper nail clippers
- Change your socks daily to keep your feet fresh
- Wear flipflops in public areas such as showers and swimming pool
Do you require advice? Call us.