Gout is a type of arthritis that causes sudden, intensely painful attacks or flare-ups in your joints. If you have gout symptoms, board-certified internist Shawn Veiseh, MD, can treat you at his private practice, University Executive Physical Program, in the Westwood neighborhood of Los Angeles. He provides expert diagnosis and treatment to manage your gout symptoms and help you maintain a healthy and active life. Call Dr. Veiseh or schedule an appointment online today.
Gout is a type of arthritis that causes acute attacks of pain, swelling, and tenderness in your joints. Gout can affect any joint in your body, but it develops most often in the joint of your big toe. The pain can be so intense that walking is nearly impossible. Other symptoms of gout include:
Gout symptoms almost always flare up at night, and there aren’t usually any warning signs before a gout attack.
Gout develops in stages. The first stage is asymptomatic hyperuricemia, which is when your uric acid levels are high but you haven’t experienced a gout attack. The next stage occurs when you have an acute attack of gout. Interval gout is the stage when you have periods of respite between gout flare-ups.
You can develop chronic gout, which is when your attacks are more frequent. Your symptoms may not subside entirely between flare-ups.
Gout develops when uric acid crystals accumulate in your joint. Uric acid forms when your body breaks down purines. Purines are chemical compounds that your body produces and are also found in foods like steak, organ meat, and seafood.
Some of the risk factors for gout include:
Gout is more prevalent in men, especially as they get older. Women can get gout, and it becomes more common after menopause.
Dr. Veiseh treats gout with a combination of lifestyle changes and medication. He prescribes anti-inflammatory medicines like nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and corticosteroids to reduce your swelling and pain. He may prescribe colchicine, a pain reliever that is very effective in relieving gout pain.
Dr. Veiseh also prescribes medications to block uric acid production or improve the way your body removes uric acid from your blood to reduce your risk of gout flare-ups.
You can also reduce your risk of gout attacks with some lifestyle modifications. For example, you should limit your consumption of alcohol, fructose, red meat, organ meat, and seafood. You should also try to maintain a healthy body weight and get regular exercise.
Call Dr. Veiseh or schedule an appointment online today to get expert diagnosis and treatment for gout.