Frequently Asked Questions About Gout

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  • Gout flare-ups typically occur in the joints, and since the foot is home to many joints, people can feel the intense effects of the disease in this body part
  • People with acute gout feel pain for around eight to 12 days, with symptoms going away in seven to 10 days

Q: What is the connection between uric acid and gout?

A: Research has shown that elevated levels of uric acid in the body, also called hyperuricemia, can cause gout. The disease develops when the metabolic process that’s supposed to maintain levels of this substance in the blood is disrupted. Increased uric acid production or inability to release uric acid from the body via the urine can cause the substance to build up in joints and/or tissues, resulting in formation of gout crystals.1

Q: What does gout feel like?

A: Gout patients usually experience excruciating pain because of gout attacks or flare-ups, or acute but intense bouts of discomfort on the joints that suddenly develop and usually happen at night.2,3 Gout flare-ups cause the skin to become sensitive, inflamed and red to the point that even a simple touch is agonizing.4

Q: Why is gout pain commonly felt in the foot?

A: Gout flare-ups typically occur in the joints, and since the foot is home to many joints, people can feel the intense effects of the disease in this body part.5

Q: What are gout crystals and how do people get them?

A: Gout crystals are a common indicator of the disease. These develop in the patient’s body due to the presence of substances like uric acid6 or calcium pyrophosphate.7 No matter what these crystals are made of, they can cause extreme pain in the patient.

Q: Is gout hereditary?

A: Gout may be passed from one generation to another. A child with one or both parents, or even grandparents, who were diagnosed with gout may be affected in the future.8 However, genetics are only one of the many risk factors for gout; there are other potential causes of gout you should know about.

Q: How long does gout last?

A: How long this disease lasts depends on the type of gout that the person suffers from. People with acute gout feel pain for a couple of days, with symptoms going away in seven to 10 days. Meanwhile, chronic gout patients are affected with the disease for years, especially if they haven’t taken any measures to improve their health.9

Q: Can essential oils be used for gout treatment?

A: Yes. Evening primrose, black currant and borage essential oils can be used to treat gout because these contain gamma-linoleic acid (GLA), a fatty acid that may alleviate arthritis pain. Prior to using any of these oils, however, consult with a physician and do a skin patch test to check for potential allergic reactions.

Q: Does apple cider vinegar work for gout?

A: Yes. Apple cider vinegar may aid in breaking down uric acid crystals that may predispose a person to gout.10

MORE ABOUT GOUT

Gout: Introduction

What Is Gout?

Gout Causes

Gout Types

Gout Symptoms

Gout Treatment

Gout Prevention

Gout Diet

Gout FAQ

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