Does your foot hurt so bad that you cannot touch a bed sheet? Do you have a joint that is red, hot, and swollen? If so, these are two common complaints of people suffering from gout or gouty arthritis.
Gout is a condition where your body’s uric acid is not properly managed. This happens when uric acid builds up in your body and urate crystals collect in a joint. The joint at the base of the big toe is most commonly affected due to the low blood flow and decreased temperature, although any joint in the body may be affected. When crystals are allowed to stay in the joint, they can start to erode the bone causing joint destruction in addition to pain. On x-ray, this erosion has characteristic “bite marks”.
The doctors at Coastal Podiatry Associates are well trained in gout. To confirm diagnosis, they will collect some fluid out of the joint and send for analysis in addition to listening to the patient’s symptoms. The presence of urate crystals will confirm that you indeed are suffering from gout. To treat gout, several medications can be used to ease acute attacks. There are other medications to prevent acute attacks and manage the condition. These medications are used in combination with diet changes and restrictions to decrease your body’s uric acid levels. If you are having any of these discussed symptoms, it is very important to seek a podiatrist to prevent further damage to the joint.
If you or someone you know is experiencing pain in their feet, the doctors at Coastal Podiatry Associates are available to help. The doctors have received extensive training in all aspects of the foot and can help you return to normal activity. To determine the best course of treatment contact any of our offices at 843-449-FOOT (3668) or visit our website at www.coastalpodiatry.com.