All About Gout: Signs And What Triggers It

Gout normally occurs as a severe attack of pain, swelling, redness, and tenderness in one or more joints.

Sambhav Kumar
Written by: Sambhav KumarUpdated at: Feb 10, 2023 10:00 IST
All About Gout: Signs And What Triggers It

3rd Edition of HealthCare Heroes Awards 2023

Gout is caused by the crystals of uric acids accumulating in the joints. It usually affects the big toe, but can affect other joints as well. Gout pain is a sudden, intense and burning sensation in the affected joint, usually accompanied by swelling, redness and warmth.

Gout attacks can occur suddenly and may recur over time. This continuous recurrence can gradually destroy tissue in the inflammatory location and can be very painful. Gout is a risk factor for hypertension, cardiovascular disease, and obesity.

What Are The Different Types Of Gout 

Following are the various types of gout:

Acute gout

This is the most common type of gout that occurs when uric acid crystals accumulate in the joints, resulting in sudden and severe pain, redness, and swelling.

Also read: Ayurvedic Expert Tells Treatments For Gout And Uric Acid

According to a study, the rapid outbreak of pain is known as a "flare", and it can last anywhere from three days to two weeks. Stressful life events and excessive alcohol usage may both trigger flare-ups.

Interval gout

This type of gout occurs between episodes of acute gout and may cause mild joint pain.

These intervals increase shorter as a person's gout worsens. Urate crystals may continue to accumulate in the tissue between these times.

Chronic gout or Tophaceous gout

This is when gout attacks occur frequently and last for long periods of time. 

This is an uncommon form of gout caused by uric acid crystal deposition in the joints, tendons, and other soft tissues. Chronic tophaceous gout usually develops after a long period of time. Individuals who receive good treatment, on the other hand, are unlikely to reach this stage.

Asymptomatic hyperuricemia

This is a condition in which a person has high levels of uric acid in their blood, but does not experience any symptoms of gout. A person's uric acid levels can be raised without any obvious symptoms. While no therapy is required at this time, excessive uric acid levels in the blood can cause silent tissue damage.

Also read: Suffering From Gout? Know It's Types And Risk Factors

What are the signs of gout 

Intense Joint Pain

Gout normally occurs as a severe attack of pain, swelling, redness, and tenderness in one or more joints. The big toe joint is the most commonly impacted by intense joint pain.

Inflammation and Swelling

Joints affected by gout are often swollen and inflamed. The skin over the joint may be stretched and shiny. Gout can make a joint feel warm to the touch.

Limited Range of Motion

Gout can cause stiffness and limit the range of motion of the affected joint.

High Levels of Uric Acid

Uric acid is a waste product that can build up in the body and form crystals in the joints. Gout is characterised by high amounts of uric acid in the blood.

What Triggers Gout Pain

Eating purine-rich meals, such as red meat, is the most common cause of gout pain. Other triggers include dehydration, high blood pressure, kidney disease, certain medications and an unhealthy diet.

When the human body breaks down purines, uric acid is formed. Uric acids are substances found in certain foods. When the level of uric acid becomes too high, it forms crystals that can build up in the joints, causing inflammation and pain. A diet high in purine-rich foods like red meat, seafood, and organ meats can elevate the level of uric acid inside the body, causing gout symptoms.