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Gout (Gouty Arthritis)

Gout (gouty arthritis) facts

  • Gout is a type of arthritis that causes inflammation, usually in one joint, that begins suddenly.
  • Gouty arthritis is caused by the deposition of crystals of uric acid in a joint.
  • Gout can cause symptoms and signs such as
    • nodules under the skin called tophi,
    • joint redness,
    • swollen joints,
    • joint pain, and
    • warmth of the joint.
  • The most reliable method to diagnose gout is to have fluid removed from an inflamed joint and examined under a microscope for uric acid crystals.
  • Chronic gout is treated using medications that lower the uric acid level in the body.
  • Left untreated, gout can cause irreversible joint damage, kidney problems, and tophi.
  • Triggers for acute attacks of gout include surgery, dehydration, beverages sweetened with sugar or high fructose corn syrup, beer, liquor, red meat, and seafood.
  • Cherries may help prevent gout attacks.
Reviewed on 10/27/2017

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